Moving from Queensland to New South Wales in her early twenties, Cleo Lynch married and raised a large family. To further her education, she completed a Bachelor of Arts in English literature at Macquarie University as a mature-aged student.
In her late forties, at a time of major upheaval in her life, she applied for employment with the NSW Department of Corrective Services where she worked in a variety of roles including correctional officer, probation and parole officer and a trainer at the academy. In 1996, she became the inaugural manager of the first community-based, pre-release halfway house in New South Wales for female offenders and their children. She sees herself as an ordinary person with a great admiration for ordinary people and their resilience in the face of the many events which disrupt or indeed, devastate a life. Her observations of how isolation and loneliness can permeate lives and extinguish hope influence her thinking and writing.
After retirement, Cleo began to explore her potential as a writer. To date her writing has been limited to formal and informal articles and papers in her professional and private spheres, including short stories and pieces while attending a community college writing group. Her release from a stimulating career in corrections into retirement left a large gap in her life where, in her own words, she decided to 'let the ground lie fallow' and settle in gradually. Her subsequent volunteer career included roles as a TAFE tutor and a radio reader for the print handicapped. She is now a volunteer at the New South Wales State Library where she hosts tours and is on the editorial panel of the magazine for volunteers.
With her transition from correctional career to retirement now complete, Cleo enjoys a diverse range of social and cultural activities with a wide circle of family and friends.