2019 LESN Recognition Award


The Legislative Education Staff Network is pleased to present Ben Leishman, Finance Manager for Public and Higher Education at the Office of the Legislative Fiscal Analyst in Utah, with the 2019 LESN Recognition Award. Ben was nominated by his colleague, Sean Faherty, a fiscal analyst for the Office of the Legislative Fiscal Analyst.

Ben Leishman began his career as an intern with the Utah State Legislature’s Office of the Legislative Fiscal Analyst in 1999.  After graduating and sticking around for nearly a year as an intern, Ben was hired as a full-time fiscal analyst with the Legislature supporting the public education (PreK-12) budget.  In 2008, Ben was promoted to the primary fiscal analyst for the public education budget. This past year, Ben completed his 20th General Session with the Utah State Legislature.  During this time, he has worked exclusively on the public education budget and budget-related policy matters.  He has actively participated in many LESN activities, such as networking meetings and responding to Listserv questions. 

Ben’s primary work responsibilities include providing staff support to the Utah State Legislature’s Public Education Appropriations Subcommittee, analyzing budgets for the public education system, including the State Administrative Office and the Minimum School Program (Utah’s funding formula program for public schools), estimating the cost of pending legislation, and making recommendations to the Legislature relating to the public education system.  He also coordinates and edits the annual “Budget of the State of Utah” report to the Legislature detailing budget actions of each general session.        

Ben earned a B.A. in German and Political Science from Utah State University and a Master of Urban Planning degree from the University of Utah.  At points during his undergraduate studies, Ben lived in Switzerland and participated in language programs and exams at the Goethe Institute in Freiburg, Germany.

Outside of work, Ben enjoys art and other creative interests, exploring urban spaces, and traveling.   

We are proud to have Ben on our LESN team. His experience and leadership provide great value and insight to our network. Thank you, Ben!