Jae has lived in the mountains of Western North Carolina for 25 years but grew up in Jacksonville, FL, where she began paddling and learning to guide her family’s canoe. She quickly became captivated with outdoor recreation and was motivated to move to Western North Carolina for a diverse outdoor experience. Jae’s first season at NOC was spent at River’s End Restaurant, and in her 2nd year, she learned to whitewater kayak and stand-up paddleboard.
Jae is certified in Wilderness First Responder, CPR, ACA Level 2 Kayak Instructor, and Swiftwater Rescue, perfecting her role as an account manager with NOC’s specialty programs (SOLO, Paddling School, and International Adventures). When she isn’t paddling and enjoying time on the Nantahala River, you can find Jae with her husband, Randy Manuel, and dog Jefe – hiking, mountain biking, skiing, playing tennis, pickleball, or searching for naturally-made heart-shaped rocks along the river banks.