Honouring our Trail Blazers for #bhm2023
Vanessa Leslie is a first-generation Canadian born to Dominican and St. Lucian parents. Leslie joined the Ontario Provincial Police in 1994. In 2017, she became the OPP's first Black female Inspector.
In 1994 she realized her dream of becoming a police officer and joined the OPP. As one of the first black female OPP recruits, she began her career in Perth, Ontario. She has actively sought to gain wide-ranging policing expertise, including postings to Alcohol and Gaming, Crime, Recruitment and Professional Standards. Leslie has also worked closely with several diverse communities and, in 2007, received an award from the Community Crime Awareness Association for her contributions to the Chinese.
In 2008, Leslie was promoted to Sergeant, making her only the second Black woman to attain that rank in the OPP. In 2016 she was promoted to Staff Sergeant, the first Black woman to hold that rank. In 2017 she became the OPP’s first Black female Inspector when she was promoted to Detachment Commander of the OPP’s Highway Safety Toronto Division.