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Meet Natou Kurtz – a thrill-seeking, outdoor-loving, biomedical engineer


A family sits on a pile of rocks near the ocean with a blue sky.
Lots of Natou’s adventures are with his wife, Lise, who also works at Northern Health, and his young daughter.

Natou Kurtz is the Clinical Equipment Lead for Northern Health’s Mills Memorial Hospital (MMH) Replacement Project. He’s also a thrill-seeker and an avid outdoor enthusiast, well known in Terrace and Northern BC’s outdoor community for his incredible athleticism and love of adventure. Natou is also a great guy, always happy to share his knowledge and experience, most recently through videos of his adventures on his YouTube channel.

Learn more about Natou and what he loves about living in Northern BC and working for Northern Health.

How did you end up in Terrace?

I was born in Hazelton (a New Year’s baby!) and grew up in Terrace. I went to school at BCIT and landed my first biomedical engineer technician job in Calgary. I wanted to return to Northern BC, though, so I stayed in contact with the regional biomedical department in Prince George, and came back to Terrace when a job opportunity opened up at Mills Memorial Hospital.

Man sitting with his daughter with a large mountain behind them.
Here’s Natou with his daughter Iliya and their dog Lily. 

Tell us about your work at Northern Health (NH)

I worked for 17 years as one of the biomeds at MMH. After the hospital replacement project got under way, I transitioned to a new role as Clinical Equipment Lead for the project. In this role, I apply my knowledge, skills, and connections to plan and implement the equipment for the new hospital.

What do you like about living in Northwest BC?

I love Terrace and Northwestern BC for its world-class outdoor opportunities. The possibilities are endless - from hiking, camping, hunting, and fishing, to skiing, kiteboarding, and kayaking, and everything in between.

Terrace is a nice size for a community. We have enough amenities, yet everything is close and we don’t deal with traffic and long commutes. Our family has lots of connections within the community. It supports great work-life balance.

What are some of your favourite things to do?

Man standing at the top of a snowy mountain.
In the winter, Natou spends a lot of time skiing in the backcountry.

It’s great to spend time outdoors being active, exploring new places, challenging myself, and doing this with friends and family.

What I like to do depends on the season! Winter is for skiing at Shames Mountain, backcountry skiing and snowmobile adventures, and skating at the lake. The rest of the year, there’s mountain biking, kitesurfing, and ocean kayaking.

What do you like about working at Northern Health?

I like working at NH because of the work-life balance it gives me, the modern equipment, diverse work portfolios, and ever-changing opportunities. I appreciate the strong relationships I’ve been able to develop with my exceptional colleagues. I also like that the scope of my work is broader than it would be in a larger facility or health authority.

Tell us about one of your favourite trips you’ve had with your family

Two summers ago, a few families completed a two-week ocean kayaking trip in Haida Gwaii. It was amazing. We saw so much wildlife. We visited old Haida village sites and the natural hot springs there. We had lots of kids on the trip, aged six to nine years old, and they spent every day exploring the beaches, with no devices or complaints of boredom!

Natou made several videos about the Haida Gwaii kayaking trip, which you can see on his Youtube channel. Here’s the trailer with a few glimpses of this amazing experience.

How did you start in these sports and outdoor pursuits?

Growing up in the Northwest, I had a few role models that helped to get me into mountain biking, rock-climbing, white-water kayaking, and backcountry skiing. I took some local courses to build my skills and support safety.

Any words of wisdom for someone who is thinking of moving to Northern BC to work for NH?

Northern BC has so much to offer, and the communities are very welcoming. Take the opportunities that are offered to you to explore new places and activities. Reach out to local clubs and organizations. For example, in Terrace, there’s TORCA, MRBS, and Shames My Mountain Co-op. Take courses. Get educated. Meet like-minded people. Have fun!

Check out Natou’s YouTube channel.