Corporate employee by day and kid at heart, Tedd Cookerly co-founded Resident Skateboards to give local riders their own point of pride. The Westerville operation has since branched from boards into clothing and hardware - and expects to be in 20 shops within the next year. Midway through ripping Skate Naked skatepark in Grandview, Cookerly shared more about his lifelong passion.

Corporate employee by day and kid at heart, Tedd Cookerly co-founded Resident Skateboards to give local riders their own point of pride. The Westerville operation has since branched from boards into clothing and hardware - and expects to be in 20 shops within the next year. Midway through ripping Skate Naked skatepark in Grandview, Cookerly shared more about his lifelong passion.

I started skating in 1976. It felt like everybody rode a skateboard. I got a hand-me-down one from a friend and immediately went to local slalom contests, where we'd take beer cans and Pepsi cans and run through them. We would do impromptu high-jump contests on the sidewalk - break a broomstick and get somebody in trouble with their mom.

Once I had a skateboard, that was it. Every kid who rides a board - it's theirs. You get to own your progress. You get to own your niche of the culture that defines you as an individual. I'll come to the park, throw in the iPod, write down the tricks I want to land on my arm and start scratching off.

Three things I can't live without are my son, my skateboard and my Weber grill.

My son and my skateboard go hand in hand . That's the reason our relationship is so unique and so awesome. At home, there's this parental figure that is always over him, that has the last word. When we go skateboarding, however, it's almost like the minute we get in the car, all of that absolutely goes away. He gives me crap. I give it right back.

With skateboarding, y ou could take a year off, or you could take five years off. You don't forget the feeling. I feel bad for people who never get that.

Resident's been around a year and five months. My business partner, Mike Plummer, jokingly said, "I've always wanted to own a skateboard company." I jokingly said back, with a beer in hand, "I've always known how to do business with skateboarding." Now we're 650 boards deep in a year.

Owning Resident is part parenting, part business, part skateboarding, part anarchy. It's mixed with a smidgen of blood and testosterone, ego and comedy.

I'm the kind of person who would put you before himself. If I can live in a car, survive that, still graduate and wind up where I am, I think I'll be OK. Now I got to worry about somebody else.

Know someone doing cool things around Columbus? E-mail John Ross at jross@columbusalive.com.