Born of Orcadian parents, Elaine has spent all her life, with the exception of periods of study, living and working in Orkney. Educated at Kirkwall Grammar School, she went on to study at the then College of Education in Aberdeen and, subsequently, Glasgow University where she attained a Masters in Education.
Elaine worked for Orkney Islands Council for a continuous period of 34 years, first as a primary school teacher followed by a period as an Assistant Head then as Head Teacher of Stromness Primary School. After 10 years as a Head teacher she was promoted to the role of Assistant Director of Education and, finally, to that of Assistant Chief Executive and Director of Corporate Services.
With family histories spanning back to the 15th century, Elaine describes herself as a “generational Orcadian", firmly rooted in place, time and history. Since her early retirement in 2011 she has supported and promoted many local voluntary organisations, Orkney Folk Festival, Voluntary Action Orkney, and Orkney Housing Association to name a few.
In addition to her love of the history and culture of Orkney, Elaine also has an interest in music and enjoys listening to, and participating in, music-making and writing.