Catherine was elected to the NSW Legislative Council (Upper House) in 2003 and re-elected in 2011.
She grew up on a farm in rural NSW and currently lives in Lennox Head. She obtained her economics degree from the University of Sydney and was elected the first ever female State President of the NSW Young Liberals in 1985.
Prior to Parliament Catherine held various policy positions in Government and the private sector, and in 1996 established “Wordsworks” – her own professional writing business with corporate and government clients.
Catherine served on the Opposition front bench for 8 years variously in the Juvenile Justice, Fair Trading and Environment portfolios. In 2011 she was appointed Chair of the Joint Parliamentary Committee oversighting the Ombudsman, and Police Integrity Commission. She has served as Parliamentary Secretary for Tertiary Education and Skills, Parliamentary Secretary to former Premier Mike Baird, Parliamentary Secretary for Education & the Hunter, and is currently Parliamentary Secretary for Digital Inclusion.
Catherine has a background as a professional writer including as a consultant and columnist for the Sunday Telegraph. She is a former Chair of Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (Australia Region), former Chair of Australian Rural Health Research Collaboration Advisory Committee, and a Director of the Virginia Chadwick Memorial Foundation (supporting the Great Barrier Reef).