AUSTRALIA’S “Most Travelled Woman” Catriona Rowntree has been named as the Bega Valley Shire’s 2014 Australia Day Ambassador.
Ms Rowntree will speak at the official Australia Day ceremony in Littleton Gardens, Bega, and at the Cobargo ceremony hosted by the Cobargo branch of the Country Women’s Association.
Ms Rowntree earned her “most travelled” tag after more than 16 years at the helm of Australia's favourite travel show, Getaway, on Channel Nine.
Her television career began after she completed a Diploma of Journalism at Macleay College in 1990, followed by stints researching at BRW and various Sydney newsrooms.
Ms Rowntree was employed as a researcher on WonderWorld in 1993 and, after much pleading, she was allowed to film one story for the show.
She has been employed on-air ever since.
Soon she was hosting What's Up Doc, filmed live on weekends from GTV in Melbourne, and after three years of sending out resumes to her favourite radio stations, she joined the team on Triple J where she hosted the national weekend request show.
At that stage she was working seven days a week in three states and loving every second of it.
In 1994, Ms Rowntree stepped into the host’s seat on WonderWorld.
Her golden opportunity to roam the globe for Getaway came in 1996 and since then Ms Rowntree has worked on many other TV projects including the National IQ Test, Funniest Home Videos, Logies Red Carpet Arrivals and The Chopping Block.
In addition to her TV roles, she has been able to utilise her passion for community work as the patron of the Arnotts Foundation, ambassador for OCRF, Mission Australia and Phillip Island Penguins.
In 2010, Ms Rowntree was delighted to honour her husband’s role as chairman of the Geelong Landcare Network by becoming an Australian Landcare ambassador, and in 2012 she also became the ambassador for Year of the Farmer.
Personally, Ms Rowntree's life changed completely when she married Victorian farmer James Pettit in 2008 and swapped her Jimmy Choo's for RM Williams.
They have two sons, Andrew and Charles, and Ms Rowntree welcomes all opportunities motherhood has brought, including designing an ongoing children's range of clothing with Target.