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Dobbie was a publisher before entering political life, and was a founder of Association Publications Ltd. She was the first woman to serve as president of the Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce. In 1983, she was named Outstanding Business Citizen of the Year by the Manitoba Chamber of Commerce.
She was narrowly elected to the House of Commons in the 1988 election, defeating Liberal candidate Allan Kaufman by 715 votes. The Progressive Conservatives won a majority government in the election, and Dobbie entered parliament as a government backbencher.
She served as parliamentary secretary to several ministers between 1989 and 1993, as was co-chair of the Castonguay-Dobbie Committee on the Renewal of Canada. The committee's recommendations later formed the basis of the government's Charlottetown Accord, which was defeated in a national referendum.
Dobbie supported Jean Charest's bid to succeed Brian Mulroney as Progressive Conservative party leader in 1993 (Winnipeg Free Press, 11 June 1993), and retained her own nomination over a challenge from Charles Maximilian (Winnipeg Free Press, 16 March 1993).
The PC Party was resoundingly defeated in the 1993 election, losing all but two of its parliamentary seats. Dobbie lost her candidate's deposit, receiving 6,432 votes (12.29%) for a third-place finish against Liberal Reg Alcock. During the campaign, she accused the rival Reform Party of being controlled by Christian fundamentalists and criticized her own party for running advertisements that mocked Liberal leader Jean Chrétien's facial deformity (Winnipeg Free Press, 17 October 1993). She also called for the abolition of the Canadian Senate (Winnipeg Free Press, 18 July 1993).
In 1997, Dobbie was appointed to the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council - Prairie Region. After Charest's resignation as Progressive Conservative Party leader in 1998, she endorsed Joe Clark to be his successor (Toronto Star, 29 June 1998).
Dobbie helped to found Pegasus Publications Inc. in 1996, and still serves as its president. She is now the publisher of Manitoba Gardener, Ontario Gardener and Alberta Gardener magazines, and has written several articles on gardening.