Meet Leslie Kellestine

Executive/Communications Assistant to a Member of Parliament

Ottawa, ON


What inspired you to enter and pursue this field?

What inspired me is what I think inspires a lot of people, to be able to make a difference and better our country.

How did you come to be in this position?

In high school I was debating between politics or an environmental studies, I was also thinking journalism. Really every job at the time seemed exciting, and I thought with politics you’d kinda get to talk about them all and if I wanted I could specialize in a certain policy area later.

Then I finished my degree, and I was presented with two options, an internship in Australia working in their government or doing a masters in intelligence and straight studies at Aberystwyth University... Fun fact is I ended up doing neither and turned them both down. I didn’t have a plan on what I’d do next, but my gut told me there was something better in store, and it was right! The next day I was offered a job on a campaign in my home province of Manitoba.

I worked really hard and made connections with people I still talk to (my roommate is now one of my closest friends). I leveraged the connections I made and the knowledge I learned during that time to help me get a job in politics.

It’s always funny the way things work out and I often wonder what would have happened had I taken of those two opportunities, but I’m so happy I listened to me gut and turned them down.

What advice would you give young women looking to enter your current line of work?

There’s going to be a lot of other duties as assigned. Sometimes they are really cool and other times they aren’t so fun, but tackle each duty with pride and passion and people will notice. With that, if you can do one thing that makes someone life easier or saves them time, do it. Your colleagues will be so thankful and they’ll know you have their backs.


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