Leslie Perales Loges
Hometown: Zeeland, Mich.
Birthday: September 10
Leslie Perales Loges graduated from Grand Valley State University with a bachelor's in journalism in Dec. 2007. A week later she moved to Northern Virginia and spent two and a half years at the Observer Newspaper in Herndon and Reston where she fell head over heels in love with community journalism.
While in college Leslie was an editor at the student newspaper, worked for GVSU's news and information department, interned at WOOD TV8 and worked at the occasional cell phone store, coffee shop, and Dutch theme park (true story).
Leslie lives in Reston Town Center with her husband and reads voraciously in her spare time. When she's at her desk you'll find her listening to jazz guitar like Joe Pass but in the car she'll be rocking out to Muse, Metric or The Sounds. She adores autumn and all things hula hoop and hoopdance-related—in fact she's a certified Hoopnotica hoopdance instructor, and you'll sometimes see her hooping around the community.
At Patch, we promise always to report the facts as objectively as possible and otherwise adhere to the principles of good journalism. However, we also acknowledge that true impartiality is impossible because human beings have beliefs. So in the spirit of simple honesty, our policy is to encourage our editors to reveal their beliefs to the extent they feel comfortable.
This disclosure is not a license for me to inject my beliefs into stories or to dictate coverage according to them. In fact, the intent is the opposite: I hope that the knowledge that my beliefs are on the record will cause me to be ever mindful to write, report and edit in a fair, balanced way. And if you ever see evidence that I failed in this mission, please let me know.
Politics -- How would you describe you political beliefs?
I would say my personal politics are moderate. It's always worth listening to what both sides have to say before making decisions and I don't believe any single issue is simple or has a black or white answer. While I may lean a little on the left on one issue, I could be a little on the right on another.
Religion -- How religious would you consider yourself?
I was raised Catholic, attending Saturday evening or Sunday morning masses growing up. I went to catechism classes, helped lead the youth group, led weekend retreats and went on years of mission trips as a teen. In college I became more open to religions around the world and have become a non-practicing Catholic, figuring out where my beliefs truly are, though I love the tradition and ceremony of mass.
Local Hot-Button Issues -- What do you think are the most important issues facing the community?
Herndon's biggest issues right now are Metro and downtown development. What happens with development in Herndon over the next few decades will have major impacts on the future of the town and it is important Herndon's residents are kept informed on the issues and participate in the discussion.