Born and raised in British Columbia, Racelle Kooy grew up with a deep love for salmon, the Pacific Ocean and the mighty cedar forests. Her Dutch immigrant father encouraged her curiosity and critical thinking and her Secwepemc- St’atl’imc mother helped her ground deeply in her sense of place and connection to people. Both parents demonstrated the richness of building and supporting community through service. Racelle is a member of Samahquam First Nation with strong family ties to Stswecem’c Xgat’tem.
Racelle strives for a balance of deep thought, proactive work that honours our Ancestors and belly laughs. She has dedicated her professional talents to strengthening opportunities for Indigenous People and communities. She is a community outreach specialist with 20 years of expertise in communications, government and media relations. She is a trusted advisor with strong analytical skills, adept at counselling leadership in advancing organizations. As a community engagement specialist, she is attuned to both the opportunities and the challenges that Indigenous people of Canada face.
Racelle has respectfully represented First Nations People and cultures to the world in English, French and Spanish at regional, national and global platforms like the Cannes International Film Festival and the inaugural live broadcast launch of Aboriginal People’s Television Network. She enjoys working directly with communities as well as collaborating with national organizations such as the Assembly of First Nations and the Indspire Foundation.
She stays grounded through her ancestral First Nation spiritual practices and as a pow wow dancer. She finds great joy in instigating a round of belly laughs and “aha” moments of exchanges with others.