Jacqui Cooper has represented Australia in the sport of Aerial Skiing for 20 years. Her career started in Mt Buller when she was recruited by Geoff Lipshut (CEO of the OWIA) to join the Techne Team. Within 3 years she was already representing her country at the World Championships in Lake Placid New York; she competed at the Lillehammer Winter Olympics. Just 10 years after starting her sport she became a World Champion; the next 10 years would see her dominate and revolutionise her sport.
In a very long and decorated career she has competed in 139 World Cup Events, 9 World Championships and been selected to 5 Winter Olympic Teams. When Jacqui competed in Vancouver she became the 1st Australian Woman in history (Summer or Winter Olympics) to represent Australia at 5 Games.
Her record 5 world titles, 39 World Cup medals, 24 World Cup wins and 3 major World Championship medals has left Jacqui as the greatest Aerial skier of all time (man or woman); an achievement that will go unbeaten for decades.
Her sport is unforgiving; she has had knee, elbow, shoulder and hip reconstructions. She broke her back in an attempt to win a record 3rd World Title; she went on and won it. At the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics she injured her knee and broke her leg just 2 days before the Olympic competition ending years of dreaming, willing and wanting.
Jacqui competed in Vancouver after a year of intense hip and knee rehabilitation; she shocked doctors and surgeons by her will, inner strength and courage to make a brave attempt to be competitive at those games. She spent most of the months leading into the Olympics in a wheel chair, learning to walk again, and gaining confidence in a sport that is brutal and cruel. She stunned her rivals, coaches, and team mates when she came 5th; her best Olympic result in the 20 years.
"Jacqui Cooper is a true legend. She did not win a medal but her performance in finishing 5th in the women's freestyle aerial event epitomised all that is so great about Australian sport." Matt Miller, CEO Australian Sports Commission
In between training and competing in events Jacqui devotes much of her time to various Sporting Committees around the world making sure she can be a voice for her peers at a National and International level . Over 2 decades she has spent time on the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) Board, the AOC Athlete's Commission (Deputy Chair), Ski and Snowboard Australia Board, the Australian Institute of Sport Athletes Commission, the International Ski Federation (FIS) Athletes Committee, the FIS Freestyle Athletes Committee, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Athlete's Committee and the WADA education committee.
The AOC has involved Jacqui in their national Drug Education program as a key presenter, her interest, knowledge and passion for clean sport made her a wonderful asset to that program. She lectured kids in schools, state sporting institutes, regional sporting academies, national federations, international athletes competing at the Australian Youth Olympic Festival and athletes at Australian Institute of Sport.
Jacqui's passion is education; the education to children and teenagers about living a healthy lifestyle, making smart choices, nutrition, being young role models, dreaming BIG, being active and goal setting. Jacqui speaks to Primary, Secondary, and Universities/TAFE students . She has also travelled to remote aboriginal communities as far as Darwin and beyond spending time promoting all things healthy with a heavy focus on "SAY NO" to alcohol, petrol sniffing and smoking.
Over 20 years Jacqui has won many awards in recognition for her achievements in sport and for her involvement in the community. During her career she was honoured as the Victorian "Young Australian of the Year" for Sport, Victorian Sports Woman of the year and Ski and Snowboard Athlete of the year. Her most recent award was the "Governor's Award", presented to her at the Vic Sports Awards for being a role model, a champion, and a woman who is successful in sport and life.
Jacqui's story is one of self belief, passion, triumph, tragedy and the ability to overcome adversity.
THE BUSINESS OF SPORT
Jacqui uses ten points in her presentation to link business to sport, and sport to business. She will tell you that all the same ingredients needed to be successful in business, were needed to dominate a decade in her sport. The fundamentals for being the greatest aerial skier of all time are also needed in business:
1. Goal set - plan.
2. Getting organised.
3. Learn the skill/craft. Keep the skills current.
4. Specialise so that you have a niche in the market.
5. Emphasising the importance continual growth.
6. Constantly reinvent yourself.
7. Persistence - adversity is everywhere.
8. Balance in work and life.
9. Process = outcome.
Jacqui will tell you that she wasn't a super talented athlete, believes she's just a woman that had a passion - a real love affair with what she was doing. She worked harder than anybody else in her field, she followed a plan, she put processes in place and she was driven. She was determined, courageous, resilient and always had the self belief that enabled her to overcome anything or anyone that got between her and hers goals. Champion athletes keep training when the crowd has left the stadium, they keep training when the lights have been turned off; they become winners when no one is watching. The same goes for successful people in business.
A VIEW FROM THE TOP
Jacqui Cooper's story is one of triumph, tragedy, defeat and success. It's a story that makes you believe in the strength of the human spirit. Her passion, persistence and unwavering dedication to a sport that is brutal and cruel, is absolutely inspiring.
Jacqui takes you on a journey - a journey that lasts 21 years in her sport. As well as being entertained and inspired, your audience will be left with a lasting impression that 'success is not final, failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue that counts'.
Jacqui can tailor a presentation so that the theme of her delivery is exactly what a business or client needs to motivate their staff or audience.
Some of her recent presentations have included;
- The parallels between business and sport
- Women in sport
- Goal setting
- Drugs in sport
Now labelled the 'greatest aerial skier of all time', Jacqui will tell you that just like Muhammad Ali, 'I am the greatest, I said that even before I knew I was'. That was the self belief needed to take on the world in a non-traditional Australian sport.
Jacqui's story resonates with all listeners and reminds us that with hard work, self belief and persistence, a world of success awaits.
Jacqui gave an excellent series of talks to our staff. She inspired, brought laughter, and above all, helped all who attend feel that achieving more was within their reach. I would happily recommend Jacqui to anyone organising an event or looking to inspire a team - she is funny, warm, and will connect across a diverse audience. And her energy levels have to be seen to be believed!
- President & Chief Executive Officer, GE Capital
What can I say about this inspiring passionate woman. Her passion and determination were evident from an early age with an unbelievable amount of self-belief. It was this self belief that saw Jacqui achieve 24 Championship Titles, represent Australia at 5 Olympic Games and be the best in the world at Aerial Skiing. A devoted career spanning 20 years. Any company wanting a speaker that covers leadership, motivation and passion please have Jacqui Cooper on your stage. You will not be disappointed. It is absolutely inspiring.
- Marketing Coordinator, Becker Mining Australia
It is one thing to have a great story to tell but an entirely different matter when it comes to having the ability to tell the story. Jacqui Cooper ticks both boxes; and they are both very big ticks! Inspiring, passionate, humorous and just a little bit crazy are just some of the words to describe what Jacqui Cooper, a true sporting living legend, brought to the table at our state-wide conference. And if the story telling, supported by an action packed audio visual presentation was not enough, then it was Jacqui's personable style and warm and engaging personality that made this experience for every delegate in attendance extra special. Well prepared and exceptionally easy to work with we were fortunate to experience a world championship performance. Thank you Jacqui!
- Victorian State Practitioner Network, Economic Development Australia
Jacqui Cooper was the most inspirational speaker I have heard from. I found Jacqui's presentation incredibly moving, inspirational and at the same time humorous and I don't think I have ever understood the capacity of a human for resilience, persistence or drive until I met Jacqui. The pace was breathtaking but she kept us on the edge of our seats for the entire time dying to find out what more could possibly happen to her. Her presentational skills are second to none and I was moved by her story. Jacqui was well received at our conference and a standing ovation was the ultimate gift of a speaker - she received it with pride from our 81 attendees. It was amazing to watch. Certainly true to say that persistence pays off tenfold and more.... We will definitely utilise her for future conferences.
- Executive Assistant to Chief Executive Ã¢Â€Â“ Retirement Living, Australian Unity
Jacqui's life story is one of self-belief, passion, and the ability to overcome adversity. Most of our group knew of JacquiÃ¢Â€Â™s sporting triumphs, but none of us knew of the story behind this remarkable Australian. Life is full of opportunities, chances, half chances, successes, and failures. Jacqui demonstrates perfectly how one is best measured by how they react and deal with such challenges. Jacqui brings to her presentation all the qualities that made her a world champion. The passion, the raw ability, and that touch of craziness all come through in what is both an inspiring and entertaining presentation. This is more than a presentation, it is a life force experience.
- Manager; Finance & Tax, Telstra Super
Jacqui Cooper is one of the most enthusiastic key note speakers I have heard to date. Her story engaged, motivated and inspired our audience of 200+ Flight Centre Ltd employees. JacquiÃ¢Â€Â™s self belief, commitment, perseverance and work ethic (with a clear action plan) can be applied to anyone both personally and professionally. An Aussie success who delighted our crowd with her passion and energetic message.... definitely the high-light of our conference.
- General Manager Corporate, Flight Centre Ltd
Jacqui Cooper has a great story to tell, and she tells it with great humility, humour and "down to earthedness" that is rare amongst those high profile successful sportspeople that tread the speaking circuit. We found Jacqui to be totally professional in her dealings with us as she prepared a presentation that was absolutely spot-on for the purpose we invited her for - she does her homework and really listened to what we were after. The response from our leadership group who were fortunate enough to be there for JacquiÃ¢Â€Â™s session quite surpasses any that we've had before - they found her to be engaging and utterly approachable, and her story absolutely struck a chord that was totally aligned to the work we had them engaged in. We have already booked Jacqui to come and do more work with us, and I have no hesitation in recommending her to you if youÃ¢Â€Â™re after a really authentic, entertaining and professional speaker with a great message that shows people they can do whatever they set their minds to!
- General Manager - Human Resources, Bunnings Group Limited
We recently held our annual business unit conference at the Melbourne Intercontinental Hotel and invited Jacqui along to talk to the group. We chose Jacqui because she has had a long and successful career and has overcome adversity to get to the top of her sport. To say that we were impressed with JacquiÃ¢Â€Â™s speech would be an understatement. Jacqui held us captivated for almost an hour as she told us about her childhood memories of becoming an international skilling champion, her rapid rise to success and how she overcame adversity, including several serious injuries, through sheer skill, persistence and ambition to get to the top of her sport. As a motivational speaker Jacqui was simply incredibly inspiring and I would recommend her to anybody. Thanks Jacqui for sharing your amazing story with us and I hope you have the opportunity to tell it to many others.
- National Manager Property and Facilities, AGL Energy Ltd.
Jacqui Cooper is an inspiration! Our delegates were in awe of her amazing story - told with humour and enormous energy. Jacqui's enthusiasm is infectious and her ability to motivate and connect with her audience is remarkable.
- Head of Dealer Groups, BT Financial Group
Jacqui Cooper is an amazing keynote speaker providing an insight into what it takes to go above and beyond. She had the audience on the edge of their seats by sharing her true life story and the grit and determination she needed to succeed in the face of impossibility. An unforgettable experience, an unforgettable champion, truly one the most inspiring Australian sports women ever! - Kim Knersch - Wyndham City Council