Kenneth Anthony Carson was born on June 2, 1981 in Sacramento, California. His parents, Carrie Graham and Kerry Carson, split when he was 2 and he was raised with his biracial Filipino and African American father in a household that emphasized athletics and discipline. Kenneth played baseball all throughout high school and it wasn’t until after that he realized his passion and skill for snowboarding. His persistence and determination led him to begin competing in the extreme sport of Boardercross. Equivalent to the popular sport of Motocross but on a snowboard, Boardercross combines speed, jumps and sharp turns as racers fly down a narrow snow packed course to the finish line.
After a few short seasons of local competition, Kenneth decided to take his passion to the next level. In the 2008-2009 Winter, he finished his most eventful season to date. After taking first place in the majority of the local Tahoe regional events, in April of 2009, Kenneth earned a spot at the USASA National Championships in Copper Mountain, Colorado. He would compete in his main event, Boardercross, and a few minor events. With his Mother and sister in the crowd, Kenneth made his way through the field of competitors, graduating into the Boardercross Finals. After an exhausting final run, Kenneth crossed the finish line in second place, taking home the Silver Medal. The rest of the week also proved successful, with a 4th place finish in Men’s Slalom and a 6th place finish in Men’s Giant Slalom.
During the 2009 offseason, Kenneth came across the media coverage of a local competitor affiliated with the Republic of the Philippines. After some research and communication with the head of the committee, he learned that the Philippines was in the process of assembling a winter sports team. As a 2nd generation multi-racial Filipino-American, Kenneth filed the needed paperwork to compete under the Republic of the Philippines Flag. The good news came in the form of an email in mid July, when the Philippine Ski Federation welcomed Kenneth to the roster of the 2009-2010 team.
As a member of the Philippines National Team, the door has been opened to compete internationally. The International Ski Federation (FIS) hosts events across the globe, including stops in Argentina, Japan, Korea, and New Zealand. The 2009-2010 season is a Winter Olympic year, and enough points this year will mean a possible spot at Olympic Trials.
For Kenneth, competing at this level would be a dream come true. More importantly, representing his family and a culture that has been such a prominent part of his life would be a tremendous achievement. As a proud Filipino American athlete from Northern California, Kenneth hopes to represent his family, friends, and entire community. His ultimate goal is to not only bring home gold, but to also be a positive representation of what it means to be Filipino American and an influential role model and trailblazer for others like him.