Barbara achieved international recognition by winning New Zealand's only gold medal at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, the first woman in New Zealand to do so for 40 years.

Barbara has had an amazing sporting career spanning nearly 25 years and having two young children still didn't stop her achieving international success. After competing at 5 Olympic Games she is an Olympic Gold, Silver and Bronze medallist. Her last competition was at her 5th Olympics in Beijing, 2008.

Since 2005 Barbara has been a volunteer as Oceania's representative on the International Olympic Committee Athletes Commission also chairing the Oceanic Athletes Commission and sitting on the Oceania's National Olympic Committee's executive board.At the end of 2009 the International Olympic Committee asked her to sit on the Woman and Sport Commission, the Sport and the Environment Commission and the World Anti-doping agency Athletes commission. Barbara is now an IOC Member.

Barbara also works as an outreach educator in Oceania on Career transition for High performance athletes. This involves putting athletes, coaches and managers through a workshop that empowers them for the future.

She has also been a SPARC sports ambassador since 1997 - working with college sporting students enlightening and educating on what it takes to be the best.