Former Gilmore MP Joanna Gash would "naturally" like to see more women in Tony Abbott's new cabinet, but defended the Prime Minister-elect, saying he had to make decisions based on merit.
At the weekend, Liberal Senator Sue Boyce attacked the Liberal Party's inability to recruit and promote women, saying the party did not support women through the parliamentary process.
Mrs Gash, who is the first female mayor of Shoalhaven, said the recent federal election saw a lot of women enter parliament on the Coalition side and they, like all politicians, would have to serve their time and prove themselves.
Mrs Gash said she had served alongside many women in the Coalition who she thought would be worthy of a cabinet position, but didn't want to single any out.
Last September, Mrs Gash was "very proud" to be elected the Shoalhaven's first female mayor, and at the time said she hoped it would encourage other women to stand for the council.
Mrs Gash contested the election as an independent candidate and declared her intention to quit the Liberal Party once her parliamentary term expired.
"I don't have to give my reasons, but one is that I have always said that I don't believe political parties should have a presence on local councils," Mrs Gash said in July 2012.
"I want to represent the whole community . . . I don't want there to be a perception that I won't."
A week after Liberal Ann Sudmalis was elected as the new Gilmore MP, Mrs Gash said she remained a Liberal Party member.
In her 17 years in Parliament, Mrs Gash had an on-again, off-again place on the Liberal Party frontbench.
In late 2007, she was rewarded for her loyalty to then leader Brendan Nelson when she was appointed to the newly-created role of shadow parliamentary secretary for tourism.
However, in September 2008, Mrs Gash had her parliamentary secretary role abolished by Malcolm Turnbull after she delayed her trip to the United Nations to back Brendan Nelson in the leadership spill.
When Tony Abbott replaced Mr Turnbull as leader, Mrs Gash was "thrilled to bits" to be given her tourism role back again, despite never publicly announcing which of the two men she supported in the ballot.
However, following the 2010 election, Mr Abbott abolished the parliamentary secretary for tourism role and returned Mrs Gash to the backbench.