Katie Pettibone was born and raised in Port Huron, Michigan. She grew up in a family of sailors racing around the Great Lakes and surrounding areas. Katie attended University of Miami, FL in 1991 where she received a degree in biology with a marine science specialty. It was in her junior year she tried out and was chosen for Bill Koch's historic first ever all women's team to compete in the 1995 America's Cup on Mighty Mary.
Katie continued to race professionally, competing in the 1997-1998 Whitbread Around the World Race on Team EF Education, the 2000 America's Cup Team America True in Auckland New Zealand and then to the next Around the World Race- the newly named Volvo Ocean Race on Amer Sports Too.
In between events, Katie went to law school in Sacramento, CA and became licensed to practice law in California and Washington D.C. Katie then went on to compete in the 2007 America's Cup in Valencia, Spain with the French Team Areva Challenge. Katie's racing experience also includes top-level regattas in many parts of the world, the classic Sydney-Hobart race and the Tour de France la Voile.
She currently works as a lobbyist in Sacramento, while working to build the Rising Tide Leadership Institute and its efforts to encourage women to compete in sailing in far reaching parts of the world, including the Middle East.