Michelle has always lived in South Australia. Schooling at Stirling East Primary School and Marryatville High School provided a great education in science and humanities which provided a solid foundation for future study and a career in politics.
She completed a degree in physiotherapy and worked at the Repatriation General Hospital, Daw Park while also getting involved with the Young Liberals. When politics took over as a passion rather than a hobby, she was offered a job with Federal MP Christopher Pyne. Several years later she worked for Robert Lawson QC, State Minister for the Ageing and Disability Services where she could apply her expertise in health. She was later appointed Executive Officer of one of the State’s peak aged care bodies. She graduated with a Master of Business Administration from the University of Adelaide in 2003.
When Diana Laidlaw announced her retirement from politics, Michelle was chosen for the vacancy and was sworn in as a Member of the Legislative Council on June 26, 2003.
Since then Michelle has held several portfolios, including correctional services, mental health, substance abuse, gambling, early childhood development, environment and conservation, sustainability and climate change, women, youth, and consumer affairs. With exposure to such a broad range of areas, her commitment to improve the quality of life for South Australians is apparent in her work.
Michelle is currently the Shadow Minister for Human Services which includes Communities and Social Inclusion, Social Housing, Youth, Volunteers, Disabilities and Status of Women.
She is married to cameraman Scott Perry and has a young son, Mitchell.