Stunt Performer, Coordinator and Actor

Having developed fighting and falling skills over Lori's long martial arts career, in addition to avidly learning of a wide variety of other physical skills, becoming a stunt performer for the film industry was a natural fit. In addition to her martial arts related skills, she is also an accomplished fencer/sword fighter, and has has trained extensively in stunt fighting, falling and movement skills. She is a highly experienced water stunt performer, and has also done a wide variety of wire and even fire stunts. In the past few years, Lori has branched out into stunt coordinating, having coordinated on several productions and received additional training and mentorship for her development.

Based in Ontario, Lori O'Connell is a full ACTRA (#01-05576) and full Stuntlist member, having earned stunt performer credits on a wide variety of films and TV shows, including Siren, The Haunting of Bly Manor, Umbrella Academy, Gen V, Joy Ride, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Once Upon a Time, The Predator, The Descendants 2, Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency, and more. Lori is also an actor, represented by Brenda Wong at MVM Agency, and has performed several roles on shows, including Pretty Hard Cases, Balestra, and A Diva's Christmas Carol - Aphrodite.

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Entrepreneur, Coach and AirBnB Host

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Lori has been starting and running small businesses since her move to Vancouver in 2003. She started out running a copywriting business, which evolved into including web marketing as well, which she ran for nearly a decade before she decided to focus more of her energy on developing her emerging stunt career. During that time, she also ran a martial arts dojo for 14 years, which she had to shut down when the pandemic hit. Since the entire film industry was also shut down, she decided to use this time to take a 6-month life coaching course at the Canada Coaching Academy, and she has continued to coach clients ever since.

In 2022, Lori and her partner Chris moved across the country back to their native Ottawa with a dream, to build a new home on a forested riverfront property in Burnstown, ON, where they will run an AirBnb business (Leaf on the Wind Nature Retreat) and a basement dojo (New Leaf Dojo). Lori also plans to run her new transformational life coaching practice (Wilder Self Coaching) there as well. Construction is still in the works with hopes of having everything up and running in early 2024.

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Martial Artist, Jiu-jitsu Teacher and Dojo Owner

Lori O'Connell has trained in the martial arts for over 30 years and taught for over 27 years. She was the owner and head instructor of Pacific Wave Jiu-jitsu in Richmond, BC, which she ran for 14 years before closing it during the pandemic in 2020. She holds the rank of 5th degree black belt and holds the title of Renshi in a Japanese style of Jiu-jitsu called Can-ryu.

In addition to her Jiu-jitsu training, Lori has supplemented her primary style over the years by studying a wide variety of other arts and styles, including Filipino martial arts, boxing/kickboxing, BJJ/MMA, Gong fu, Taichi, Karate, Aikido, Taekwondo, Wing Chun, etc. She has taught Jiu-jitsu/self-defense at martial arts schools and organizations, private companies, and community organizations across North America and internationally.

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Author, Blogger, Communicator

Lori O'Connell is the author of When the Fight Goes to the Ground: Jiu-jitsu Strategies & Tactics for Self-Defense, published internationally by Tuttle Publishing. She writes on her blog,, which gives her an outlet for her passions for cooking, outdoor adventure, and health/wellbeing. Prior to closing her dojo in Vancouver, she also wrote regularly on her blog, Jiu-jitsu Sensei for 13 years, and has guest written a number of articles on other martial arts sites, blogs, and newsletters, and has been interviewed on several podcasts. Lori wrote and co-produced the short film Inner Demon, which was selected for screening at a humber of film festivals, and even won several awards. In addition, she won 1st prize for Roadkill, a piece she wrote for the E-Clips flash fiction contest in 2005.

In addition to her writing, Lori graduated with honours earning a BA in Communication at the University of Ottawa, and worked professionally in marketing/PR as a copywriter and Web marketing/social media specialist for over 7 years both as a consultant and on staff for local Vancouver businesses.

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