Former members of the ACT Legislative Assembly, Annette Ellis (ALP), Giulia Jones (Canberra Liberals), and Caroline Le Couteur (The Greens), recently presented at the National Library of Australia about their experiences as women in politics. For Annette and Giulia who were both brought up in political households where politics was discussed “around the kitchen table”, going into politics may have seemed like a natural progression. Caroline’s entry to the Assembly was different because she did not expect to win, so initially, she saw herself as an “accidental” politician. The NLA event was part of the Canberra and Region Heritage Festival program, presented in association with the National Foundation for Australian women to celebrate the ACT’s milestone of being the first Australian jurisdiction to be headed by a woman, Rosemary Follett (ALP), and to mark the ongoing work of the Foundation in documenting women’s contribution via the Australian Women’s Register. Prior to her election to the ACT Assembly, Annette had gained some insights about the Canberra electorate through 10 years working for the then federal Member for Canberra, Ros Kelly, while Giulia developed political experience in working as a campaign manager for a candidate. The three women agreed that working in politics can be hard, especially given that it has often been dominated by senior men, but agreed that “good outcomes” for the electorate can be achieved through working together, and friendships are often forged across the political aisle. After some discussion centring on what they consider to be their biggest achievements as politicians, they agreed that women bring an important perspective and dynamics to a room, and give each other the confidence to speak up in what may otherwise be a room full of older, possibly over-assertive men. After a term in the ACT Assembly, Annette later served in federal parliament. For more information about this event see: