Donna Mae was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba where she lived until her father was posted to Ottawa. She attended Lisgar Collegiate in Ottawa.After the war, they returned to Winnipeg where she attended Kelvin High School and then completed her schooling at the University of Manitoba, graduating with a bachelor of Interior Design in 1950. Donna Mae loved connecting with people and at University, she joined Alpha Delta Pi Sorority. She was a founding member of the Student Society of Interior Designers in 1949, later the Professional Interior Designers Institute of Manitoba.
In 1950, Donna Mae moved to Vancouver working as a designer for Ridgewood Studios and serving on the Executive Board of the Interior Designers Institute of British Columbia. In 1952, she returned to Winnipeg working for Wilson Stationary Co, establishing their Office Planning Division.
Donna Mae free-lanced as an Interior Designer for various commercial clients until 1979. An Emeritus Member of PIDIM and dedicated to the Interior Design profession; she was a Charter Member of both the Interior Designers Institute of Manitoba and Interior Designers of Canada; President of IDIM, Director, Public Relations coordinator and Advisor for 5 "Interior Design" trade exhibitions; initiated their role in the Ronald McDonald House project and participated in the 2001 Kapyong Barracks Design Charrette.
In her desire to improve her community, Donna Mae served as President of the Councils of Women of Winnipeg and served in several positions for the Provincial Council of Women of Manitoba. She was a charter member and President of the Altrusa Club of Winnipeg, a women's service club. With Altrusa she founded and operated TOTS (Take-Out-Toy Service), a toy lending service for children with special needs, and helped found the Language Bank of Winnipeg, a 24-hour emergency translation service. She served as President of Schoolmasters Wives, Regional Alumnae Director and Permanent Alumnae Secretary for Alpha Delta Pi Sorority. She was a force on the Assiniboine Park-Fort Garry Residents Advisory Group, was appointed by Winnipeg City Council to the Civic Charities Endorsement Bureau, which she chaired, and was one of the founding members of W.I.N.(Winnipeg into the Nineties) - a non-partisan citizens group to provide informed leadership and set new direction for municipal policy. She was a member of Westworth United Church and on moving to Vernon in 2009, a member of the UCW Jubilee unit of Trinity United Church.