TAKING A SEAT AT THE ECONOMIC TABLE | INDIGENOMICS BY DESIGN 2021 SPEAKERS
PRESIDENT AND CEO, NATIONAL ABORIGINAL TRUST OFFICERS ASSOCIATION (NATOA)
Anishinaabe/Bear Clan, Michele Young-Crook is a figurehead of capacity building for Indigenous Communities and an innovative advocate for Indigenous Women and Youth. She is currently the CEO and President of the National Aboriginal Trust Officers Association (NATOA), a charity organization mandated to facilitate financial literacy and wellness resources amongst Canada’s Indigenous communities to build and manage self-sustainable Trusts.
In 2020, Michele created Luna and owl(previously known as MYC Design). Her jewellery and gift box curating company donated 10% of the proceeds to Kids Help Phone’s Action Plan for Supporting First Nations, Inuit and Métis Young People, a cause she is very passionate about. Her journey as a philanthropist and entrepreneur encouraged her to push limits and think outside the box to help Indigenous womxn. Michele created a Facebook group called Indigenous Women’s Holiday Market, a community of 48,000 shoppers, Indigenous craftspeople and artisan’s goods.
Recognizing the need for a one-stop-shop for Indigenous-owned companies, Michele took it one step further and launched a virtual mall called IndigiMall, a platform for all Indigenous people from around the world to have a place to showcase their companies and services.
Amidst keynotes and speaking engagements, Michele also co-wrote Unbreakable Spirit, a collaborative anthology of essays written by women who’ve overcome it all to reach success as they’ve defined it. She has been called upon by the press and influential organizations to weigh in on Indigenous issues. Michele volunteers on the Human Right Watch Gala Committee and the Board of Directors for the Canadian Juries Commission.
Michele credits her success to her relentless commitment to providing Indigenous People with the tools to overcome barriers and access to ample resources and programs to help foster and maintain self-confidence and quality of life.