Michelle Young's season of The Bachelorette (opens in new tab)—the second of two Bachelorette seasons in 2021—kicked off in October 2021. One of the standouts among Michelle's cast of men (opens in new tab) is the immediate frontrunner Nayte. The 27-year-old sales executive–full name Tundé Nayte Olukoya–gave Michelle butterflies when he stepped out of the limo, capping off a sweet introduction with his catchphrase, "It's better Nayte than never."
Described as a "6-foot, 8-inch Adonis of a man" in his ABC bio (opens in new tab), Nayte struck a chord with viewers from his introduction, where he cutely gushed about how beautiful Michelle was. Later in the night, he saved the cocktail hour after Michelle had to send home a contestant, cheering her up and also opening up, being vulnerable about his parents' divorce. He ended up receiving the first impression rose, and he and Michelle shared the first kiss of the season.
Here's everything we know about the frontrunner.
He grew up in Canada.
The 27-year-old is originally from Winnipeg, Manitoba in Canada. He graduated with a Bachelor's in business administration and a minor in Africana studies from Eastern Washington University in 2019.
He works as a sales executive in Austin, TX.
According to his LinkedIn, which doesn't include his picture, Olukoya started working for Indeed in Austin, TX, after his graduation. He previously worked as a bartender and a sales rep for AT&T during college.
He previously worked as a teacher's aide.
Olukoya is familiar with the life of a teacher. His mom is a teacher, and according to his LinkedIn profile, he previously volunteered as a teacher's aide for Omaha Public Schools in Nebraska, where his mom lived at the time. He also talked about that connection with Michelle during the season 18 premiere.
"I have crazy respect for teachers," he said, "and knowing that she's a teacher has me believing at least that she's a person that's going to want to have like conversations that are, you know, not superficial because that's what I'm looking for."
He became a dog dad this year.
Olukoya adopted an English Cocker Spaniel puppy named Percy earlier this year, and he's already shared several adorable pics of the pup on Instagram. When he introduced Percy on social media last May, a month after he was adopted, he quoted a Drake lyric in the caption: "I wasn’t hiding my kid from the world — I was hiding the world from my kid."
He's an avid reader.
The 27-year-old likes a good nonfiction book, and often posts pics of his current or recent reads on Instagram. Some of the books he's highlighted are Robin DiAngelo's White Fragility, Vicki Robin's Your Money or Your Life, and Ryan Holiday's The Daily Stoic.
His other hobbies include outdoor activities like hiking and paddle boarding, but he "can't dance to save his life," per his ABC bio.
He's looking for a "teammate for life."
According to his ABC bio, Olukoya is looking for a long-distance relationship, now that he's approaching 30. It says his dream woman is "outgoing, spontaneous and has enough swagger of her own to keep up with him."
"He's looking for a connection filled with heat and for someone who will be just as passionate about him as he is about her," the bio continues. "Nayte is looking for a teammate for life and is confident that Michelle may just be the one he's been waiting for."
There will be some drama between him and his fellow contestants.
After Olukoya received the first impression rose, ABC revealed in the season teaser that the other Bachelorette contestants won't be fans of the frontrunner as the competition goes on. In one clip, as he and Young kiss, we hear a contestant saying, "Nayte is a player."
Another scene shows Clayton Echard saying, "You’re an actor and you’ve come on a reality TV show," to which Nayte replies, "What are you talking about?" Later in the teaser, Nayte breaks down and cries, and a few other contestants do as well. The clip gave no hint of Michelle's response to all the drama, though.
Quinci LeGardye is a Contributing Culture Editor who covers TV, movies, Korean entertainment, books, and pop culture. When she isn’t writing or checking Twitter, she’s probably watching the latest K-drama or giving a concert performance in her car.
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