Craig’s Catherine Compton struts her stuff as model, actress |

Craig’s Catherine Compton struts her stuff as model, actress

Catherine Compton smiles while on the sidewalk along Yampa Avenue. Compton is an alumnus of Moffat County High School who has recently begun acting and modeling professionally. She also holds a bachelor's degree in behavioral science with an emphasis in sports and fitness from Hardin-Simmons University.
Andy Bockelman

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and Catherine Compton has been seen by more and more pairs of eyes recently.

By her own admission, it's been "kind of a crazy path" for Compton, a 2007 Moffat County High School graduate, as she's pursued an education and sought out a career in modeling and acting.

Looking back, it's not at all what she would have expected as a teenager.

"When I graduated high school, I thought I was going to be a speech and hearing pathologist, go to Texas, marry my boyfriend at the time, grow up and have a life," she said. "I was not even close, but that's not a bad thing."

A bachelor's degree in behavioral science with an emphasis in sports and fitness from Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene was supposed to provide the next logical step to professional life, but life suddenly took another turn.

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An aunt encouraged Compton to give acting a try in 2010. The family member was an acquaintance of a casting director of a casting director at the time. This led to Compton becoming an extra on the Starz TV show, "Crash," based on the Oscar-winning film.

After graduating from Hardin-Simmons, she also appeared in several episodes of the A&E Western crime drama "Longmire" in a non-speaking role as a bartender. The show was canceled in August, and while the likelihood of it appearing on another network exists, Compton is also looking into other options, such as the possibility of a part on the NBC medical series "The Night Shift."

The experience has been nothing but a good one for someone who considered herself an introvert and dreaded the idea of public speaking. Being in front of a camera also brought her to the attention of modeling experts, a field she has approached with both enthusiasm and caution.

"I figured this way I could work on fitness and stay in shape," she said. "I always liked the idea of it, but I always thought I was too little."

Though you wouldn't call her short, Compton literally looks up to most of the other women sporting the newest fashions, nearly all of whom are younger and considerably taller. When she signed with the agency Wilhelmina Bazaar, she was told she likely would only model for print ads and not be selected to work the runway.

Instead, the opposite happened, and she most recently was in the spotlight last weekend during the Fashion Week hosted by Mercedes-Benz of El Paso, Texas.

"It's kind of an overwhelming, surreal feeling, because it really never happens," she said of being one of the smaller models.

The clothes were only part of the fun, with some hair and makeup changes providing Compton with a new look.

"It was kind of like having an alter ego," she laughed.

No matter who she's playing on screen or how she's dressed, she can't hide her roots in Northwest Colorado, though that's a far cry from how she felt about Craig at age 10, when her family moved to the town from Houston. Nowadays, she visits the area regularly and with a lot of sentiment in her heart.

"There's just something captivating about it," she said. "I can't get away."

Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or