Noonan holds honorary doctorates from Adelphi University, St. John Fisher College, Miami University, and her alma mater, Fairleigh Dickinson University. After serving as a producer for CBS News, she worked as a speech writer for President Ronald Reagan's administration. She wrote Reagan's famous 1986 speech after the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster. During the 1988 Presidential Election she also wrote memorable phrases for then-Vice President George H. W. Bush such as "a kinder, gentler nation" and "a thousand points of light."
In 2008 she criticized John McCain's choice of Sarah Palin for vice president. In an opinion piece, she railed against Palin as too inexperienced. In September 2012, after several post-convention setbacks in the campaign of Republican candidate Mitt Romney, she described his campaign management as "incompetent" and a "rolling calamity"
- What I Saw at the Revolution: A Political Life in the Reagan Era (1990)
- Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness (1994)
- Simply Speaking: How to Communicate Your Ideas With Style, Substance, and Clarity (1998)
- Character Above All (1999)
- The Case Against Hillary Clinton (2000)
- When Character Was King: A Story of Ronald Reagan (2001)
- A Heart, A Cross And A Flag (2003)
- John Paul the Great: Remembering a Spiritual Father (2005)
- Patriotic Grace: What it is and Why We Need it Now (2008)