The Wieland Shield represents a long-standing relationship between the Los Angeles County Lifeguards and the Victorian State Surf Life Saving Association of Australia. The exchange of ocean lifesaving knowledge, skills, and techniques has continued unbroken for the past five decades.
Upon the invitation of the Surf Life Saving Association of Australia (SLSA), the LA Lifeguards participated in the first International Surf Life Saving Carnival which was held in conjunction with the 1956 Olympic Games held in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
Los Angeles County Lifeguards hosted the first Australian SLSA team to tour the USA in 1965 and presented the team before the LA County Board of Supervisors.
In 1967 LA Lifeguards participated in an educational and competition tour of Australia and New Zealand. The tour included a return to Melbourne from Feb. 21 to 28, and competitions were staged at Portsea and Ocean Grove. The Australian responsible for hosting the Americans was George Nutbeam. The manager of the USA team was LA County Lifeguard and Surf Lifesaving Association of America President Bob Burnside.
As a result of the 1967 tour, George Nutbeam established a biannual exchange where one country would tour the other every two years. A perpetual trophy sponsored and named for the US Consul General to Australia, Mr. Wieland, would commemorate the competition.