John "John" Alexander Florence (born 18 October 1992 ) is a Hawaiian professional surfer. He is known as "one of the most dominant Pipe surfers of his era" and has most recently won the title of 2017 World Surf League Men's Champion, thus naming him the best surfer in the world. He is the first Hawaii-born surfer to win back-to-back world titles since the late great Andy Irons.
Born in Honolulu, Hawaii, as the oldest of three children, Florence grew up in Hale'iwa in an ocean-side house at Banzai Pipeline. He resides in a newly purchased house in Pupukea. He also has a second house with his mother, Alexandra, and his two younger brothers Nathan and Ivan in front of Off the Wall. He was introduced to surfing by Alexandra, who is a surfer herself. With his mother's help, Florence first rode on a surfboard when he was six months old, and he was surfing on his own by the age of five.
At the age of 13, standing at 4'11" and weighing 85 pounds, Florence became the youngest surfer ever to compete in the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, which consists of three big-wave surfing contests in Hawaii. He had previously won five amateur awards, the 2003 1st NSSA Nationals Open Mini Grom, the 2005 1st NSSA Nationals Open Boy's, the 2005 NSSA Open Boys and the Explorer Menehune Champion. He did not pass the first round, but he did score higher than Shane Dorian, a professional surfer twenty years Florence's senior. Afterwards, Florence said he was "pretty scared," but that he was "happy with how did". When Florence was still a youngster, pro surfer Kelly Slater said, "John John's going to know the waves on North Shore like no one we've ever seen before."