A retired political consultant, Lesley L. Israel remains a well-respected figure known for decades of professional excellence. She notably served in a variety of positions during several presidential campaigns. She was the director of media for Humphrey for President from 1966 to 1967, director of scheduling for Bayh for President in 1971, special assistant for Jackson for President from 1975 to 1976, and coordinator of national labor for Kenney for President from 1979 to 1980. Ms. Israel then rose to the role of senior vice president for the Kamber Group in Washington, where she stayed for six years. She proceeded to use her background to form Politics, Inc., and remained as president and CEO until she retired in 1995. The company specialized in consulting and media production for Democratic candidates.
When she wasn’t working, Ms. Israel dedicated a good deal of her time to organizations in her community. She was on the board of directors of the Adas Israel Congregation and was the president and international election coordinator of the Bender JCC of Greater Washington from 1981 to 1983, and was a member of the Democratic Charter Commission from 1982 to 1983 and the Democratic Delegate Selection Commission from 1983 to 1984. Ms. Israel also held positions with the NCSEJ, IFES, and OSCE. To this day, she remains the chair of the Avalon Coordination Center, an international election expert for the U.S. Department of State, the chair of the Bender JCC of Greater Washington, a member of the national executive commission for the Anti-Defamation League, and a member of the Democratic Site Selection Committee.
In 2016, Ms. Israel was appointed by then-President Barack Obama to the Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad, which identifies and reports on cemeteries, monuments, and historic buildings in Eastern and Central Europe and obtains assurances that these properties will be protected and preserved. Along with other members of the commission, Ms. Israel encouraged, supported, and facilitated private and foreign government site restoration and preservation relating to the heritage of U.S. immigrants.
As a testament to her achievements in her field, Ms. Israel was honored as one of the 100 Most Powerful Women by “Washington Magazine,” and received a special service award from the Jewish Community Center of Greater Washington in 1984. Ms. Israel also received the 2017 Marquis Who’s Who Lifetime Achievement Award, and was featured in numerous editions of Who’s Who in American Politics, Who’s Who in the East, Who’s Who in America, and Who’s Who of American Women.
Ms. Israel earned a Bachelor of Arts from Smith College in 1959. She has been married to Fred Israel for 56 years, and together, they have two children and five grandchildren.