Born and bred in Paarl, Desiree matriculated from Paarl Gimnasium High School.  She started her career in the financial services sector and completed her Bank Exam Certificate and various banking, marketing and managerial courses up to an Assistant Manager Level.  Later she branched into the Consulting Engineering industry in an administrative/financial capacity.

She joined Charl Laäs Optometrists as a Financial- & Human Resources Officer looking after all debtors and creditors as well as liaison with the various medical aid funds.

She is married to Dolf whom she met while still in school and married in Paarl in 1971.  She has a son and a daughter, 3 grandsons and 2 granddaughters.

Her interests are gardening, outdoors doing caravanning and off-road driving, enjoying touring the country and neighbouring countries and of course spoiling and spending time with the grandchildren.