Born and raised in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Cathrine has achieved a level of success few would have expected: She divides her time between two businesses; she heads Consumer Connection Inc. and as such, has won numerous international entrepreneurial awards for her stunning business success (including the prestigious YWCA Women of Distinction Award for Entrepreneur/Innovator) and also travels the globe, where she shares her story of hope and inspiration with audiences from all walks of life (Heads of States, Student Groups, Entrepreneurial/Business Groups, Non-Profits and at various Women`s Conferences.) Her memoir, Beautiful Buttons: A Memoir of Survival and Triumph, is available worldwide.
Not bad for a kid who was raised by alcoholics living in poverty and was neglected and abused as a child. Cathrine moved too many times to count, because her parents never paid the rent, opting instead to buy booze and cigarettes. When she had a baby at fifteen, she dropped out of school in grade eight to raise her son. Without role models (except her drug addicted and criminal uncles or uneducated and abused aunts) she became involved with crime and landed up in jail and then on probation. She survived mostly on public assistance or she`d steal anything from anyone. She did try to go the straight and narrow a few times, but something always pulled her back to a life underground - because that`s where she felt she belonged. Feeling cheated for an upbringing and education she was never afforded - at thirty - she tried to even the odds by forging university transcripts to get into medical college. However, after completing her second year as a medical student, she got found out, so she did what she always did when the heat got too hot - she ran - right into the hands of the mob and prostitution, where she got shot at and her life was often threatened.
At the age of forty, she was homeless, unemployed and broke and planned to rob a bank, giving into her seemingly hopeless situation and life. Then two things happened; she found a program to help budding entrepreneurs that both challenged and engaged her, and she met someone who believed in her and demanded she be her best self.
From poverty row to mahogany row, Cathrine has come a long way from her humble beginnings to achieve the level of success that she has. Her life experiences and lessons learned, cross all all borders and cultures, and her story is a testament to the strength, courage and determination of the human spirit.
"Your story is truly amazing...the success of the 6th annual International Women's Leadership Conference was due in large part to the addition of your unique story, personal passion and words of wisdom."
"...a passionate and energetic personality with inspiring personal stories and innovative business concepts. As a presenter, she invokes thought, creates awareness and gives the audience the knowledge needed to exceed in business and in life. "
"If there is any way to personify success through perseverance then Cathrine Ann is a model example. Cathrine shares success strategies, survival skills and real case studies from her own life story, with her audience. Cathrine's motivation and drive comes from within. She is a woman who keeps trying to move forward, and that is important to her - that is also what inspires others. Cathrine is a strong advocate of community service and she has committed to living life generously to ensure that the poor, marginalized and broken are not left behind."
"'That which does not break us makes us stronger' is a familiar saying that truly defines Cathrine Ann...I wish every girl and every women had the privilege of being in her company, if only for a short time. Her story is truly moving and memorable!"