Jennie Michel was born in London and spent much of her childhood in Suffolk. She trained as a nurse at Barts Hospital in London. Jennie continued her nursing career in London and Edinburgh before moving to New Zealand in 1979 to marry the Kiwi she had met in London. The couple live on Auckland’s North Shore and have a son and a grandson. Jennie spent the latter years of her career working with vulnerable older people. She was one of the writers of the resource book that led to the development of an Elder Abuse Prevention Service in New Zealand.