Ph.D. in English and MA in Philosophy from The Graduate and University Center of The City University of New York, NY.  Lesley received the first interdisciplinary concentration in LGBTQ / Sexuality Studies, at the Ph.D. level, in the United States.  BA, Honor’s degree in English is from Simon Fraser University, BC.  She has participated in over twenty years of leadership, coaching, and development training, is the winner of numerous literary awards and prizes, and has a number of certifications.

Lesley writes literary and culture-based articles, fiction, poetry, theory, and reviews as well as wordsmiths and edits all things personal or professional for print, websites, magazines, and journals.  She has written for The Dictionary for Literary Biography, American Book Review, Poetry in Performance among others. Lesley’s book, The Switch: Freedoms in Sexuality, Desire, Gender, and Identity is due to be published this year.  Her specialties traffic at the intersections of sexuality & sex, desire & pleasure, roles & identity, gender and the body, relationships, communication & connection, culture & media, writing & language.

She teaches and speaks on Literature, Writing, Theory, Gender, Sexuality, and Interdisciplinary/Cultural Studies and worked on numerous writing and curriculum programs in New York for ten years.   Lesley leads and collaborates on workshops, panels, and conferences for universities, schools, organizations, and events.  She is also a therapist, coach, and consultant in the realms of transformative and inspiring conversations that inspire & ignite new results for her clients.

Lesley has a long history of being involved in arts and community based events: her film “Refusals in Dwelling” has had various screenings, one being on opening night at The New York International dependent Film & Video Festival.  Multi-media installations, art, and performance pieces have been shared at numerous galleries, performance spaces, festivals and events in New York, San Francisco, and Vancouver, BC.

Her approach is to dynamically facilitate authentic communications that illuminate, empower & enliven.  Lesley is committed to increasing knowledge, self-awareness, and self-expression to the degree that people and groups fulfill on their highest goals & visions, produce breakthrough results, and experience more power and freedom.  Lesley believes that through new actions, thinking, and discoveries in authentic self-expressions we can know and experience unprecedented fulfillment, joy & aliveness … and by extension, through our personal expansion & contributions, our sense of connection and experience of love is expanded.

Lesley has an indispensable presence—passionately articulate, sensitive, a committed and ardent reader and critic. She has a remarkable degree of attunement to verbal and emotional nuances in literary and cultural artifacts. She is a student and fellow traveller whose intellect and spirit I treasure most deeply. She is a dynamic, experienced, responsible educator; she has the power to infuse people and a room with gravity and levity, with imagination and excitement. Her interests in literature and culture are wide-ranging and eclectic; she has a vast storehouse of ideas and experience from which to draw in her pedagogy and writing. As a writer she is capable of marvelous effects: I’ve been impressed by her creative writing, their flair and depth, their adventurousness. I recommend her with the greatest enthusiasm.

Wayne Koestenbaum

Writer, Poet, Cultural Critic, Artist & Distinguished Professor in English, The Graduate Center, City University of New York, NY