Until 2016 I was the Assembly Member for Cynon Valley and one of the first politicians to sit in the new Assembly. During that time, I gained a wealth of experience in a variety of roles. My work has also included working internationally on behalf of the Welsh Assembly and mentoring aspiring women politicians and those seeking a greater contribution to public life. Before becoming a politician, I worked in education as a careers advisor, teacher, youth worker and managed an education business partnership developing links between schools and business.
In 2016, I stood down from political life so I could pursue my other interests and passions. I am delighted therefore to have been asked to join the committee of the Women’s Archive of Wales.
I gained a History and Classical Studies degree from Aberystwyth University. Beyond that I did a Master’s degree in Women’s Studies in Cardiff University followed by an MPhil on a study of women’s experiences in Welsh Labour politics. In 2016, I was awarded a Doctorate from the University of South Wales based on an oral history study of women in post-war Rhondda. I was hugely privileged to have had one of the Archive’s founding members, the late Dr Ursula Masson, as my initial supervisor.