Recommendations for your pathway to politics: Cathrine Burnett-Wake

Photo of Cathrine Burnett-Wake

Cathrine Burnett-Wake, Member of the Legislative Council for Eastern Victoria

In this blog series, we ask our alums to tell us about their personal ‘pathway to politics’ and provide their recommendations for content that will help support, guide, inspire and engage other women on their political journey.

My pathway to politics really began when I was first introduced to the world of Federal politics a decade ago.

At the time I was working as a migration agent and met with a federal MP to seek their support for my client, their constituent, to obtain Ministerial intervention to grant their visa.

The process that unfolded fascinated me. From there, I then began to pay closer attention to the world of politics and started participating in lobbying and submission writing to various inquiries and committees in relation to migration laws and policy.

I joined the Pathways to Politics Program for Women at University of Melbourne in 2021. The wonderful speakers and course content provided invaluable insight and guidance on ‘getting pre-selected and elected’ and has greatly assisted me in getting to where I am today.

I’ve had the privilege of serving and volunteering for my local community for many years as Councillor on the Yarra Ranges Council, a board member for several community organisations, and a long-serving volunteer at a community legal service, with a focus on assisting at-risk and vulnerable migrant women.

Now, as a Liberal representative in the Legislative Council for the Eastern Victoria Region, I get to put my skills into practice to stand up and advocate for the needs of my local constituents. I can play my part in ensuring that politics is truly representative, and its polices, decisions and direction are the best for the community where we live.


My recommendations

Get Elected by Ruth McGowan

A must read for anyone interested in being a candidate at any level of government.

Get Elected has generously been made available as a free book download by its author Ruth McGowan.

Download Get Elected

Cover of the book "Get Elected"

Never Split the Difference by Chris Voss

A book by a FBI negotiator on how to negotiate. I found this particularly helpful when dealing with difficult people or to get outcomes.

Find Never Split the Difference online

Cover of the book "Never split the difference"

Ted Talks

None in particular – I listen to any I can find on effective public speaking!

Visit the Ted Talks website

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