Monique Earsman, whose working life has included roles in the federal and ACT parliaments and within the Catholic Church, has been named the new executive director of Catholic Social Services Australia.

Ms Earsman joined Catholic Social Services Australia last year, serving as executive officer to Ursula Stephens, who stepped down from the CEO role earlier this year.

CSSA chair Francis Sullivan said Ms Earsman’s background in politics and strategic communications has prepared her well to carry forward the organisation’s history of speaking up on behalf of Catholic social service agencies and those they serve.

‘Having worked in the offices of ministers and shadow ministers in Canberra, at both the territory and Commonwealth levels, Monique knows how policy and legislation can change the lives of people, including the vulnerable,’ Mr Sullivan said.

‘Monique’s contribution to CSSA in the past year or so has demonstrated what skills and passion she will bring to the role of executive director. The board is very excited to appoint her to lead our organisation forward.’

In addition to her roles in politics, Ms Earsman has also worked in the public service and with strategic communications firm Newgate.

‘Through my life and my work, I have developed and enhanced a deep personal drive to seek better outcomes for people who are socially or economically disadvantaged, and especially children,’ she said.

‘CSSA, through the national office and through our members, is making a difference to the lives of many of those vulnerable groups.

‘We will continue to advocate strongly for those who are often on the edge of our society to instead be placed at the centre of our thinking and policy-making.’

Ms Earsman noted that her first job after completing university was as a research assistant in the policy department of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference.

‘In some ways, I’ve come full circle – and working in the Church allows me to meld together my upbringing in a Catholic environment with my studies and professional experience,’ she said.

Ms Earsman steps into the role of executive director immediately.