But it turns out she's a normal down-to-earth person just like you and me, and we had a great conversation about her journey into quilting, then teaching and then owning a quilt shop and teaching studio that she manages with her daughter, Ashleigh Ward.
These are the kinds of quilts that first made me aware of who Donna was. Big, bold, Pacifica inspired quilts with exquisite machine quilting:
'Pacific Garden' (pattern available here)
Donna's award winning quilt 'Pacific Spice'
Lately, I've come across Donna on Instagram. Her handle is @donna8b and she is surprisingly doing a lot of handwork with English paper piecing using modern fabrics. This may have something to do with being laid up after major leg surgery! There is also a lot of mini-swaps going on, some foundation piecing and plenty of yummy colours and patterns to look at.
Donna's Instagram feed. She has since blinged her cast up by modpodging Tula Pink fabric all over it!
Donna and I discuss whether this is a sea-change in style for her or whether there are still some batik, pacific inspired quilts yet to come. We talk about how quilt shop owners need to stay relevant and up to date and how video tutorials and social media are helping Donna and Ashleigh make connections with their customers.
Watch Donna's tutorials here.
There is lots more good stuff in the interview so have a listen, then drop by Donna's Quilt Studio and say hi.