A former senior public servant, Cathy Beehan received the Prime Minister's Outstanding Achievement Award for Public Service Excellence - the highest award for persons holding executive positions in the federal public service. Cathy was the first Canadian head of the NAFTA Secretariat and has expertise in NAFTA dispute settlement. She has also served as senior policy advisor to a federal Minister. She holds degrees in law and the performing arts, graduating with distinction in both. Since 2002 she has been the Chief Executive Officer of Action Canada; in this capacity she has played a key role in designing and implementing the Action Canada Fellowship program. Ms. Beehan continues to play violin in the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra, which she joined in 1976.