Chan was born in Emilypolis, the child of two Chinese Catholics who had come as refugees to Georgeland in 1962 after being persecuted by the Chinese communist government. Her father, Lien Han (Eddie Chan) became a popular local business figure in the 1970s and 1980s. She attended private schools and the University of Scoita, where she studied economics. Despite her Asian background in a very conservative, homogenous state, Chan has had a successful political career, having become President of her local branch of the Conservative Party at only 22. After an academic career, she first stood for the Georgeland Senate in 1995; she failed in her bid but was elected to the state legislature in 1996, as part of John Sutherland's landslide Tory victory. In 1998 she married Ben Chan, a lawyer and public servant, and changed her name.
Chan was elected to the House of Commons in 2002. She retained her seat with an increased majority at the 2005 election, making it the safest in the country.
Chan was raised a staunch Catholic, which has shaped her politics. Chan is very firmly against abortion, euthanasia and same-sex marriage. She is considered as a 'Mick' Tory; one of the hard-line Catholic Right members who hold very 'traditional' social and economic views. She supported Mary Byrne in the Conservative Party of Georgeland leadership election, 2006.
Chan is currently the only MP of Chinese background.