Elizabeth Louise Kendall (born 11 June 1971) has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Leicester West since 2010. In 2011, Kendall was appointed Shadow Minister for Care and Older People and invited to attend meetings of the Shadow Cabinet.
In September 2015, Kendall stood for the Leader of the Labour Party in the leadership election following the resignation of Edward Miliband. She finished last, in fourth place.
Early political career
Kendall joined the Labour Party in 1992 and, after leaving university, worked for the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) where she became an associate director for health, social care and children's early years. In 1996, she became a political adviser to Harriet Harman, and her special adviser in the Department for Social Security after the 1997 general election.
In 1998, when Harman was sacked from the government, Kendall resigned and was awarded a fellowship by the King's Fund, a health charity. She also wrote a series of research papers for the IPPR and was appointed as the Director of the Maternity Alliance, a charity for pregnant women. She was unsuccessful in an attempt to be selected as Labour's prospective parliamentary candidate for Chesterfield at the 2001 general election, following the retirement of Tony Benn.
In 2001, she returned to government to work for Patricia Hewitt, at the Department for Trade and Industry, and then followed her to the Department for Health where she was involved in bringing in the smoking ban in 2006. After Hewitt left government, Kendall became the Director of the Ambulance Services Network, where she remained until 2010.
In 2010 Kendall was elected as MP for Leicester West with a majority of 4,017 despite a 7.6% swing away from Labour. She made her maiden speech in a debate on tackling poverty in the UK on 10 June 2010. She was briefly a member of the Education Select Committee between July 2010 and October 2010. She supported David Miliband for the leadership of the Labour Party in 2010.
In Ed Miliband's first reshuffle in October 2010, she joined the Opposition frontbench as Shadow Junior Health Minister where she served under John Healey. In 2011, she contributed along with other Labour MPs and former Labour ministers to The Purple Book, in which she wrote a chapter on the early years and health and social care where she proposed a 'Teach Early Years First' scheme. Later that year, she was appointed to the new role of Shadow Minister for Care and Older People and became an attending member of the shadow cabinet.
Labour Party leadership candidacy
On 10 May 2015, Kendall announced that she was standing as a successor to Ed Miliband for the Labour Party's leadership following its defeat in the general election a few days earlier.
Kendall finished 4th in the election winning 4.5% (18,857) of the vote.