Meet Australian Fuels Operations Manager Catherine O'Donnell

Catherine takes on her latest challenge armed with high calibre teams and a wealth of experience
Image Catherine ODonnell is the Australian Fuels Operations Manager at Mobil Oil Australia.
Catherine O’Donnell is the Australian Fuels Operations Manager at Mobil Oil Australia.

Catherine O’Donnell has had a varied career with Mobil Oil Australia over the last 17 years. Her latest challenge as Australian Fuels Operations Manager is an opportunity to deliver exciting improvements across midstream facilities, working with yet another high-quality team.

“I’m most excited about meeting a whole bunch of new people; it has been a pleasure to meet the team and understand each facility’s strengths and areas where they may need help,” Catherine said.

“There is a range of projects the team wants to deliver this year as well continuing to maintain our facilities in a safe and reliable manner.”

Starting her career in mining at Rio Tinto in Paraburdoo (Iron Ore), Catherine then moved back to Melbourne to take on her first role with Mobil at the former Altona Refinery. Catherine’s time at the refinery was spent working in a wide range of roles in every department, including engineering, business development, projects, maintenance and operations.

“Altona is a very special place for me. As sad as it was, I am very proud to be a part of the team that helped to deliver the safe shutdown of the refinery and conversion to a terminal.  The team upheld Altona’s high standards throughout the process whilst looking out for each other,” Catherine said.

Catherine’s broad ranging experience gained during her years at the former refinery has equipped her with the ability to adapt and learn new roles quickly.

“I have been allowed to take on a number of different roles outside of my training at university.  It has been challenging not knowing all of the subject matter going into a role but it has often led to great opportunities. I never anticipated taking on the Instrument and Electrical Maintenance Supervisor role but it ended up being a real highlight for me.

“Ultimately, I was fortunate enough to find key mentors during my career, which helped to point me in the right direction.”

Aside from access to varied opportunities, Catherine believes it’s the high calibre of people she gets to work with that has made her time with the company so interesting.

“I remember speaking at my first year morning tea about how fantastic my teammates were. That hasn’t changed across my 17 years here.”