Sheila Leslie

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Sheila Leslie
Sheila Leslie.gif
Nevada State Senate, Washoe 1
Former member
In office
2011 - 2012
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 2, 2010
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Nevada State Assembly
1998 - 2010
Bachelor'sSonoma State University, 1977
Master'sUniversity of Nevada, Reno, 1979
Date of birth11/06/1955
Place of birthCarmel, CA
ProfessionSpecialty Courts Coordinator/Human Services Consultant
The information about this individual is current as of when his or her last campaign ended. See anything that needs updating? Send a correction to our editors
Sheila Leslie (b. November 6, 1955) is a former Democratic member of the Nevada State Senate, representing the Washoe 1 district from 2011 until her resignation on February 15, 2012. She resigned from her seat in order to run for election to District 15 of the State Senate in 2012. In order to run for election in District 15, Leslie moved to a smaller home within that district. However, because Senate rules don't allow a Senator to reside in two districts at once, she was forced to resign from her Washoe 1 seat.

Leslie served in the Nevada State Assembly, representing District 27 from 1998 to 2010. She is a former Majority Whip and Assistant Majority Whip in the Nevada State Assembly.


Leslie earned her B.A. from Sonoma State University in 1977 and her M.A. in Spanish Language and Literature from the University of Nevada, Reno, in 1979. Her professional experience includes working as a specialty courts coordinator and human services consultant, as an executive director of Children's Cabinet, Incorporated, from 1987 to 1993; planning administrator for Community Services Agency in 1986; and executive director for Tahoe Human Services from 1984 to 1985.[1]


Campaign themes


The following excerpts came from Leslie's website:[2]

Education: "Nevada needs to continue to strengthen our educational system at all levels, from pre-Kindergarten through post-graduate work. Our investment in education benefits all of us and is vital to attracting good businesses and improving our quality of life...."

Nevada's Green Economy: "I believe Nevada needs to transition to a Green Economy, featuring an expansion of jobs in the renewable energy sector, assistance to homeowners to retrofit their homes for green energy efficiency, and a system of tax incentives to make Nevada more competitive in attracting the renewable industry...."

Nevada's Natural Resources: "We live in a state with an abundance of natural resources and I am committed to protecting them. Our children deserve a heritage of pristine mountain springs, clean air to breathe, and a sustainable community....:

Healthcare: "I believe access to affordable, quality health care is critical to the citizens of our state...."

Human Services: "As a human services professional, I know how important it is to provide a safety net to address the critical needs of our most vulnerable citizens: our children, our elderly, and those living with disabilities...."

Equal Rights: "In 2009, I was instrumental in passing SB 283, perhaps the most historic civil rights legislation in Nevada in half a century, a bill creating domestic partnerships.... In 2011, I sponsored SB 331, and co-sponsored and supported two other equal rights bills (SB 368 and AB 211) to provide protection against discrimination in public accommodations, housing, and employment for gay, lesbian, and transgender citizens."

Criminal Justice: "Addressing the root causes of crime is a cost effective way to reduce crime and redirect lives to more positive outcomes. While I believe in the value of these programs, I also believe that people must be held accountable for their criminal actions...."

Mining: "The 2011 session featured a renewed focus on the mining industry in Nevada, its benefits and liabilities. I sponsored SB 86, to repeal an archaic law that gave the mining and sugar beet industries the power of eminent domain. The vast majority of the Legislature agreed that these industries should not have the power to take private land, passing the bill on votes of 20 to 1 in the Senate and 41 to 1 in the Assembly...."

Committee assignments


In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Leslie served on these committees:


In the 2009-2010 legislative session, while in the Nevada Assembly, Leslie served on these committees:



See also: Nevada State Senate elections, 2012

Leslie ran in the 2012 election for Nevada State Senate, District 15. Leslie ran unopposed in the June 12 primary election and was defeated by Greg Brower in the general election, which took place on November 6, 2012.[3][4][5][6]

Nevada State Senate, District 15, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngGreg Brower Incumbent 50.2% 29,352
     Democratic Sheila Leslie 49.8% 29,086
Total Votes 58,438

Leslie announced on February 15, 2012 that she would be resigning from her seat in the State Senate in order to run in a more competitive race in the new Senate District 15. Leslie hopes that unseating Republican Greg Brower would allow Democrats to hold onto their majority in the Senate after the 2012 elections. According to the Las Vegas Sun, the competition between Leslie and Brower will be one of three heated races in the Senate. They expect Las Vegas Districts 5 and 6 to be very competitive as well.[7][8]


See also: Nevada State Senate elections, 2010

On November 2, 2010, Leslie won election to the Washoe 1 District Seat in the Nevada State Senate, defeating Philip Salerno (R) and Thomas Cornell (L).[9]

Nevada State Senate, Washoe 1 General election (2010)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png Sheila Leslie (D) 11,070
Philip Salerno (R) 5,769
Thomas Cornell (L) 1,001


See also: Nevada State Assembly elections, 2008

On November 4, 2008, Leslie won re-election to the District 27 Seat in the Nevada Assembly, defeating opponents Patrick Neal and Daniel Joseph.[10]

Leslie raised $135,258 for her campaign.[11]

Nevada State Assembly, District 27 (2008)
Candidates Votes Percent
Green check mark transparent.png Sheila Leslie (D) 10,154 67.28%
Patrick Neal 3,770 24.98%
Daniel Joseph 1,169 7.75%

Campaign donors


In 2010, a year in which Leslie was up for re-election, she collected $128,105 in donations.[12]

Listed below are the four largest contributors to Leslie's 2010 campaign.

Donor Amount
Citizens For Justice Trust $5,500
South Point Hotel & Casino $5,000
Boyd Gaming $5,000
MGM Mirage $5,000


Listed below are the five largest contributors to Sheila Leslie's 2008 campaign.

Donor Amount
MGM Mirage $7,500
Boyd Gaming $5,000
Republic Services of Southern Nevada $5,000
Sierra Pacific Power $4,000
Barrick Gold Strike Mines $4,000


Nevada Policy Research Institute

See also: Nevada Policy Research Institute's Legislative Session Review & Report Card

The Nevada Policy Research Institute, a Nevada-based conservative-libertarian think tank, releases a "Legislative Report Card" evaluating members of the Nevada State Legislature on "each lawmaker's voting record on legislation impacting the degree of economic freedom and education reform." Bills determined by the Institute to be of greater significance are weighted accordingly. According to the Institute, "a legislator with a score above 50 is considered to be an ally of economic liberty".[13]


Leslie received a score of 32.70 percent in the 2011 report card, ranking 46th out of all 63 Nevada State Legislature members.[13]


Leslie has one child, Emma.

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Political offices
Preceded by
Bernice Mathews (D)
Nevada State Senate, Washoe 1
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Nevada State Assembly District 27
Succeeded by
Teresa Benitez-Thompson (D)