Rachel Stephen-Smith - Member for Kurrajong

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Rachel grew up in O'Connor. In many ways, she had a typical Canberra upbringing, enjoying the freedom to ride her bike to school and explore local parks and playgrounds (not to mention storm water drains) with her brother, step-sister and two dogs.

But her parents taught her never to forget that everyone’s story is different. She saw this during her years at Turner Primary, Lyneham High and Dickson College, and it has motivated a 20-year career in social and economic policy.

Since completing an economics degree at ANU, Rachel has worked as a policy adviser and senior executive in the Federal and ACT Governments and with non-government organisations. She’s also been a waitress and a diplomat; a horse riding coach and a Cabinet Minister's Chief of Staff. Rachel understands the challenges of governing, and knows that good decision-making is driven by clear values, sound evidence and strong community engagement.

Rachel has been giving back to the Canberra community since she was 17, volunteering with local organisations, running major equestrian events and helping to develop and manage the public equestrian park in Yarralumla.

Working with one of the most disadvantaged communities in Washington DC inspired Rachel to take the next step in standing up for her own community. She is seeking to represent the people of Kurrajong because she knows that vibrant, sustainable, inclusive cities don't just happen - they are built by governments with a vision for a better future.

Rachel knows how to bring people together and get things done. As part of the Barr Labor Government, she will work to build a stronger, fairer Canberra.


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