I was born and raised on the NSW South Coast. I grew up on a dairy farm at Terara and Worrigee. I am from six local generations of dairy farmers dating back to 1856 at Broughton Vale and Jaspers Brush. I’m proud to have attended nearby Terara Public School and Nowra High School.
With a degree in Economics and a Master of Business, I have had over 25 years experience working in small, medium and large organisations, both private and public. I’ve had a long career working in education, skills and training on the South Coast. My roles have included working as a Work Placement Coordinator for the Shoalhaven Schools Workplace Learning Program, a TAFE Teacher working in Outreach where I helped people back into work and further training, as well as teaching management, finance and leadership as a commerce tutor for the University of Wollongong, Shoalhaven Campus. I’ve also worked as a civilian Business Operations Manager/Strategic Workforce Planner, for the Navy Aviation Systems Program Office at HMAS Albatross.
My husband of 26 years is Glenn, who runs his own carpentry and building small business. Together we’re proud to have raised our four children, Henry (23), Sophie (21), Bart, (20) and Hugh (18), together in the Shoalhaven.
Local people will know me as pivotal in leading the successful Save the Nowra Pool Campaign, which was a fierce, long, but successful community campaign from 2009-2015 which resulted in the new Nowra Aquatic Park. Being 39 years old at the time, with four young kids, working full time, and having nothing to do with politics before that, I saw that elected representatives could make decisions impacting local people’s lives and that of our communities. And so I entered politics, to stand up for my community.
I was first elected as the Member for Gilmore in 2019. It was the first time a female Labor MP had ever won the seat of Gilmore. Despite a close contest, I was honoured to be re-elected in 2022, the crucial 77th seat in Parliament and the first ever second term Labor MP to be the Member for Gilmore.
My upbringing gave me a love for community and made me a fighter for my community. I draw strength from Dame Mary Gilmore, the great progressive and fighter for rights for women, pensioners, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, workers and the disadvantaged in general.
As a mum, I know how important our early learning, schools, TAFE, uni and education pathways are. And every young person and people of all ages deserve to be able to live locally and access local health services.
As your representative in the Australian Parliament, I’m working hard for you. I’m fighting for better roads, a safer Princes Highway, improved community infrastructure and services, local jobs, housing, education and apprenticeships, for better health and aged services.
My job as your MP is to work for you.
I have a particular passion for health and well being. When I’m not working, with my family, you’ll find us out enjoying our beautiful bush and marine environment, walking and riding trails around Jervis Bay, snorkelling, fishing and swimming. Oh, yes, and my dogs are never too far away!