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Parenting and public life: a panel discussion

Photo of Sally Sitou MP smiling, suburban shopping strip in the background
20 March 2023, Global Institute for Women’s Leadership (GIWL) ANU

Facilitated by Georgie Dent, this candid panel discussion features Sally Sitou (Member for Reid and UNSW Pathways to Politics alum), Hon Andrew Leigh (Member for Fenner) and Elizabeth Lee MLA (Member for Kurrajong) speaking about the importance of family-work balance for women, highlighting the barriers that women face in achieving equal representation in politics and leadership positions.

Watch the recording

About the speakers

Sally Sitou is the Federal Member for Reid. Prior to entering parliament, Sally was the international media adviser at the University of Sydney and has experience working for international development. Her belief in Labor’s values of social justice and fairness for all led her to work for AusAID in Samoa, and for an NGO advocating for the elderly in China through the Australian Government’s Australian Youth Ambassadors for Development program. The daughter of hardworking Chinese parents who fled Laos because of the Vietnam war, Sally believes passionately in the education and work opportunities that allowed her family to thrive and prosper in Australia. Sally and her husband are raising their young son in Homebush.

Hon Andrew Leigh is the Assistant Minister for Competition, Charities and Treasury, and Federal Member for Fenner in the ACT. Prior to being elected in 2010, Andrew was a professor of economics at the Australian National University. He holds a PhD in Public Policy from Harvard, having graduated from the University of Sydney with first class honours in Arts and Law. Andrew is a past recipient of the Economic Society of Australia’s Young Economist Award and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Social Sciences. Andrew is the father of three sons – Sebastian, Theodore and Zachary, and lives with his wife Gweneth in Canberra. He has been a member of the Australian Labor Party since 1991.

Elizabeth Lee MLA is Member for Kurrajong, Leader of the Canberra Liberals, Shadow Treasurer, Shadow Minister for Climate Action and Shadow Minister for Economic Development, Tourism and Major Projects. Prior to her election to the ACT Legislative Assembly in 2016, Elizabeth was a lawyer in government and private practice and a law lecturer at The Australian National University and the University of Canberra. Elizabeth is the first Australian of Korean descent to be elected into an Australian Parliament and the first Asian-Australian leader of a major political party in Australia having been elected leader of the Canberra Liberals in 2020. Elizabeth lives in South Canberra with her partner, Nathan, and 3-year-old daughter, Mia and is expecting her second daughter in April 2023.

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