Dr Leslie Cannold

Author / Ethicist / Public Speaker

Leslie is a dynamic keynote speaker and panel presenter who brings a unique mix of reason, passion and creativity to every event. She is currently an Associate Professor of Ethics and Impact and the Resident Ethicist at the Cranlana Centre for Ethical Leadership at Monash University.

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Leslie Cannold is an award winning author of both fiction and non-fiction works

Leslie enjoys speaking about her books as much as writing them! Whether its speaking to young adults about her historical novel The Book of Rachael, guiding public consultations on the Arts, or exploring the creative process with playwrights like David Williamson and Kylie Trounson at the MTC on opening night, she is a must-have presenter for schools and arts-related consultations and events. Find her writing at Brave and Free on Substack.

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Book of Rachel

Historical Fiction

What, No baby?


The Abortion Myth


Leslie has a Master of Bioethics and a PhD in social research.

She is a member of the Victorian Board of the Nurses and Midwifery Board of Australia, the Victorian Mental Health Tribunal and chairs the Ethics and Research Committee at Marie Stopes International (London). As a long-time researcher and successful advocate, she knows more than most about the decisions women make about their fertility and is a recognised expert in assisted reproduction and genetic screening, gender equality and work/family balance as well as health leadership and regulation. As a public ethicist, her trademark ability to make complex issues engaging for a lay audience has been recognised by her many years as a weekly guest on 774’s drive program with Virginia Trioli, a regular Moral Maze column in the Fairfax press and her appearances on ABC TV’s Q & A and Moral Compass programs. Find her writing at Brave and Free on Substack.

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Leslie is a dynamic and sought after keynote speaker and panel presenter.

With satisfied audiences in the business, government, educational and the not-for-profit space, she is a safe pair of hands for any event: reaonably-priced, impeccably presented, always punctual and prepared and experienced enough to adjust with no mess or fuss to last-minute schedule changes or power-point failures.

Deploying her skill at making complex ideas engaging for a lay audience, she provides hard-hitting presentations with clear take-home messages on ethics, innovation and leadership.

10 Tips for Implementing the Recommendations of the Banking and Finance Royal Commission

Recognising and Safeguarding Vulnerable Clients

Courage, Integrity, Wisdom: How to be an ethical leader

Inspirational Leadership

The Ethical Choices Everyone Must Make

Gender equity: an inclusive effective agenda for men and women

Work/Life Balance for Men and Women

How to Survive Failure

Respectful relationships

Young People and Info & Communication Technologies

Who you hire matters: Factoring ethics into recruitment, retention & motivation programs



Book Leslie Cannold for your event


Thank you, Leslie, for your excellent intensive writing course and your incisive advice which resulted in the great new start and concise first three thousand words to my book.

Sara Vidal Author, BELLA AND CHAIM. The Story of Beauty and Life

Excellent. Leslie’s key note presentation at the Excellence Awards evening for Northeast Health Wangaratta was stimulating and inspiring. Staff are wanting to know when we are getting her back for a longer presentation and discussion.

Northwest Health Wangaratta

Leslie knows her topic thoroughly. She delivers an interesting and entertaining presentation, with excellent examples that people can relate to and understand. Her presentation style is engaging, intelligent, and she delivers with a sense of humour, optimism and positivity. She is an engaging, thought provoking and change-making speaker.

Hume City Council

Dr Leslie Cannold was a guest speaker this year at the Executive Link Leadership Program, her presentation was most interesting and challenging, really getting to the nub of the tough intractable dilemmas that we face in the health system. Her capacity to both engage and entertain was remarkable, we are planning on using her for other events, I have no hesitation in recommending her, especially to help leaders develop new thinking to solve ‘wicked’ problems.

People & Culture, Alfred Health Executive Director

Leslie Cannold was chosen as a keynote speaker for our celebrant conference because of her high media profile, her speaking skills and her proven academic attainment. Her chosen theme was most relevant to the conference program...She spoke clearly and effectively with exceptional body language, dealing with questions in a direct and personable way. The audience reaction was clear. 95% rated the speech excellent.

Monash University Civil Celebrants

Congratulations on your role as guest speaker at my VC Awards for Excellence event. Your talk was thought-provoking and challenging, and your audience appreciated every minute.

The VC Awards

I was one of the people who came to see you after your address yesterday morning which resonated with me both professionally and personally. Like you, I think I’m hard wired to do the right thing every time...Despite having regular exposure to leadership development at a high level, I have never heard anyone speak like you did yesterday…

Energy Power Systems Australia Managing Director

Leslie's address was everything we'd hoped and more. She was inspiring and an absolute pleasure to deal with.

Bayside Medicare Local

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Pop over to the blog and dive deeper into the thoroughly insightful mind of Dr. Leslie Cannold with a collection of blog posts exploring a wide variety of topics


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Check out Leslie's past and upcoming events