Sister Gerarda belongs to the Irish province of the Congregation of Jesus and Mary. In 1974, she completed a BA Degree in Irish and Spanish and an MA in Spanish in 2005. She has also completed one-year courses in Theology and Pastoral Leadership at the Mater Dei and All Hallows Institutes respectively. Having taught for some years in several Jesus and Mary schools in Ireland, Sister Gerarda was appointed in 1990 as Principal of the Jesus and Mary Secondary All-Girls School Salerno, Galway, a post which she still holds. Sister Gerarda contributed to the setting up of the Le Chéile Schools Trust in Ireland and has served as a Director since its establishment in 2009. The Trust is responsible for over 60 schools which belong to over 14 Congregations.