Born and raised in Charleston, SC, Freddy Renken’s roots run deep in the boating industry. His family’s involvement in the industry dates back to 1957 when his grandfather, Walter “Palsey” Renken, founded Renken Boat Company. Walter had five children, Walter Jr., Kenneth, Ralph, Carl, and Anne. Each of them ended up having stock in the boat business. Carl (Freddy’s father) decided to buy out the family members in 1987 when the current president, Ralph Renken, retired. Freddy started working at Renken Boats in 1985 when he was 16 years old. His first job there was in the capping department working on deck rigging.
A Porter-Gaud graduate, Freddy left for UNC on a football scholarship and played 2 years and decided to finish school at the College of Charleston and return to the family business. He started full time at Renken in 1990 working in the warehouse and establishing a kitting process for parts being delivered to the assembly line. He spent about one and a half years in the warehouse and then moved into finishing department and soon after became plant manager. Renken boats closed its doors in 1995 and Freddy started Sea Fox that same year as the president and the company is now in its 28th year.