|Member of the European Parliament
10 June 1999
|Preceded by||Position established|
30 July 1973 |
Bellshill, North Lanarkshire
|Alma mater||University of St Andrews|
Catherine Stihler (born 30 July 1973) is a British Labour Party politician. She has been a Member of the European Parliament for Scotland since 1999, being re-elected in 2004, 2009 and 2014. She is currently the only female MEP representing Scotland. In October 2014, she was elected as Rector for the University of St Andrews.
Early and personal life
Born as Catherine Dalling Taylor, Stihler was educated at Coltness High School, later going on to the University of St Andrews where she gained an MA with joint honours in International Relations and Geography and a postgraduate MLitt in International Security Studies.
While at St Andrews she was elected President of the Students' Association, serving from 1994 to 1995. She also served on the Scottish Executive Committee of the Labour Party from 1993 to 1995 and was the Young Labour delegate to the National Executive Committee from 1995 to 1997. While a postgraduate student she stood in the Angus constituency at the 1997 general election.
In March 2006 she had her first child, Alexander, with her husband David (whom she met while at university). Catherine and David's second child, Andrew, was born in 2011.
After the election Stihler worked for Anne Begg, Member of Parliament for Aberdeen South, as a researcher. She was placed at third on the Labour Party list for Scotland in the 1999 European Parliament election, and therefore took the third Labour Party seat under the d'Hondt electoral system becoming the UK's youngest MEP at the age of 25.
Catherine was re-elected as an MEP for Scotland in 2004 and 2009. She has served as the Deputy Leader of the EPLP and held positions as Labour's Euro spokesperson on health and fisheries. Catherine is currently Labour's Euro-Spokesperson on Consumer Rights and is the only Scottish MEP on the prestigious economic and monetary affairs committee. As the Parliament's rapporteur on construction products (2011), she has steered through a new piece of law which improved the single market on construction products whilst ensuring the highest protection against hazardous substances. She is an anti tobacco campaigner with a key interest in campaigning for greater recognition of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and helping those who have the condition have better treatment. Her current work includes improvement of EU public procurement rules, reform of financial services regulation in particular tackling unfair bank charges and the promotion and inclusion of all EU citizens within the digital economy.
She was the unsuccessful Labour candidate in the Dunfermline and West Fife by-election, 2006.
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