Jaclyn Symes is a country girl born and bred in Benalla in Northern Victoria. She attended Benalla College where she completed her VCE in 1996 before moving to Melbourne to undertake a Bachelor of Laws from Deakin University. She was admitted to practice as an Australian lawyer in 2006.
Jaclyn’s passion for social justice and hard work was instilled in her by her parents and led her to her to working with people with disabilities as a carer at Alkira Residential Services. Her time at Alkira has made her acutely aware of the struggles that those with a disability experience on a daily basis and the importance of Government putting in place the right policy settings to minimise their challenges.
Following her time at Alkira Jaclyn was drawn to the union movement and took up a role with the Australian Services Union as an Industrial Officer. It was a natural step for her to further her legal training and aligned with her values of ensuring a fair go, equity and justice.
Jaclyn soon realised that to make a real difference she would need to influence policy and this led her to a role as an Adviser to the former Bracks/Brumby Labor Government working for the then Deputy Premier & Attorney General Rob Hulls.
After losing Government in 2010 Jaclyn became Senior Legal and Justice Adviser to the Leader of the Opposition, Daniel Andrews, before being elected to Parliament at the November 2014 election.
Jaclyn is a currently serving as a co convener of Emily’s List and is a member of the Friends of Winton Wetlands and Mildura Working Man’s Club, She was Chair of the Women’s Correctional Advisory Committee March 2015.
Jaclyn is married to Gerard and has 2 children.