Katrien received a Licentiate Degree in Sociology from KU Leuven in 1997. In 2004, she subsequently received a Licentiate Degree in Law (magna cum laude) from Vrije Universiteit Brussel. After graduating, she joined the Leuven Bar of Attorneys as a trainee-attorney, and joined the Leuven based law firm Vandebroeck, De Rieck, en Verstraeten. In 2005, Katrien moved to the Brussels Bar of Attorneys and joined the law firm Eubelius, where she practiced law for the next three years. She co-wrote a legal publication about Commercial Law with prof. Ludo Cornelis.
In 2008, Katrien permanently moved to the United States, where she continues to live at present. At the end of 2017, she graduated with an LL.M. in U.S. Legal Studies from the University of Oklahoma College of Law. She passed the Uniform Bar Exam in New York and was officially admitted to the New York Bar in 2021.
Since 2016, Katrien has been connected to the Fundamental Rights Research Centre (FRC) as an external research fellow. In the past years, she has conducted academic research about topics related to police and human rights under the tutelage of Prof. Paul De Hert. She has published in Belgian and European legal journals, both as a solo author and as co-author with Prof. De Hert. In 2018, they participated in a Dutch book on the Federalist Papers, with a contribution about the evolution in U.S. case law about the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Also in 2018, they participated in a seminar for Belgian police, that was organized by the Centre d’Études sur la Police in Brussels. Their lecture focused on use of force by law enforcement and the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). In 2021, Katrien and Prof. De Hert have several publications coming up, including one about deadly use of force by the police and Article 2 ECHR, and an annual overview of the case law of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) on police for 2019. Katrien has also followed the ECtHR case law on this topic as a correspondent for the Belgian legal journal Politie & Recht. In 2020, she was also in charge of the ECtHR criminal case law review section for Tijdschrift voor Strafrecht. Katrien will be submitting a PhD proposal on a comparative legal topic of police and human rights in 2021.