Noriko Okaya was born in Japan and has been a resident of New York since 2001. Noriko grew up participating in all kinds of sports and always loved the water, so standup paddling immediately captured her heart when she tried it for the first time three years ago. When Noriko isn’t paddling she can be found traveling, hiking (Noriko is an aspiring Adirondack 46er), dancing (salsa and tango), various cross-trainings for paddling, and she recently started learning surfing and rock-climbing. Noriko is also a member of the RedSUPLadies, based in New York City. The RedSUPLadies paddle, train, and race together, but mostly share tons of adventures and laughs.