Windsor Tecumseh —
I am very pleased to advise you of a number of important new additions and changes to the Senior Staff of the OLO.
We’ve just had a very successful summer with the Liberal Express. We’ll be building on that momentum with the return of Parliament and the Open mike town hall meetings this Fall. And the individuals I’m announcing today, working with the rest of the team in the OLO and with Liberals across Canada, will help make it happen.
Patrick Parisot – Principal Secretary
Patrick brings a wide breadth of domestic political and international diplomatic experience to the role of Principal Secretary to the Leader of the Opposition. Over the last several years, Patrick has served with distinction as Canadian ambassador on three continents – first as Ambassador to Chile, next as Ambassador to Portugal, and – until last week – as Ambassador to Algeria. Prior to that Patrick served Prime Minister Jean Chretien first as Press Secretary and later as Senior Advisor. Prior to coming to Ottawa in the early 1990s, Patrick had a career in journalism in Montreal, at Radio Canada, among other organizations. As Principal Secretary, Patrick will provide senior strategic counsel to Mr. Ignatieff. Patrick’s unflappable calm, extensive high-level experience, maturity and incisive political judgement are just some of the notable assets he brings to his important new role in the OLO. Patrick begins his new role on October 7th.
Leslie Church – Director of Communications
Leslie is a native of Edmonton. She is a graduate of the London School of Economics and the University of Toronto Law School and practiced litigation at Torys LLP before joining the OLO in 2008. Leslie also served as an advisory member of the "Rae Review" of post-secondary education in Ontario. Leslie has been Director of Issues Management since June of this year. She assumed the position of Acting Director of Communications upon the sudden and tragic death of Mario Lague last month. She has carried on the same high level of professionalism and disciplined, strategic messaging. Leslie has more than proven her mettle, and I am delighted that she will now be serving fulltime as OLO Director of Communications. Leslie will hold responsibility for all OLO communications, including the Press Office.
Brigitte Legault – Director and Senior Advisor, Quebec
From Montreal, Brigitte is a seasoned political hand whose extensive experience belies her relative youth. She has served as President of the Young Liberals of Canada (Quebec), Vice President of the International Federation of Young Liberals (IFLRY) and Vice President of the Liberal party of Canada. Brigitte has worked on Parliament Hill for the Liberal Research Bureau and as an aide for former MP Belinda Stronach. Most notably, Brigitte was the candidate in the 2008 federal election in the riding of a Vaudreuil-Soulanges, taking on a prominent Harper cabinet minister. Brigitte was also the key organizer behind the successful Liberal Express tours in the province of Quebec this summer. Nor are Brigitte’s successes confined to the political arena; she has also successfully operated her family’s small business. Brigitte’s strong on-the-ground Quebec focus will be a the major part of her new responsibilities in the OLO.
With today’s important new additions, following is the complete OLO Senior Staff lineup:
Chief of Staff – Peter Donolo
Principal Secretary – Patrick Parisot
Chief Operating Officer – Patricia Sorbara
Executive Assistant to the Leader – Gavin Menzies
Senior Policy and Platform Advisor – Brian Bohunicky
Director of Policy and Liberal Research Bureau – Mike McNair
Director of Communications – Leslie Church
Director of Legislative Affairs – Jeremy Broadhurst
Director and Senior Advisor, Quebec – Brigitte Legault
Party Liaison – Heather Chiasson
I’m honoured to be heading up such a high-performance team. I’m thrilled at the success the entire Liberal Family has had over the last few, exciting months. And I know I speak for the entire hardworking OLO team when I express my optimism and confidence for the months ahead.
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