As it has in almost every sector, conquering everything from business and medicine to fashion and the world of food, hospitality, and entertainment, the Lebanese diaspora has found its way to political life across the world, and in Latin America in particular.
Lebanese descendants originally from the small village of Qalhat in Koura, the Abdala family's migration to Latin America dates back decades. Claudia Ledesma Abdala identifies herself as a woman of Lebanese origins and has succeeded in reaching multiple positions of influence within Argentinian public institutions and offices.
Claudia Alejandra Ledesma Abdala de Zamora was born on September 14, 1974, in La Banda Santiago to Mr. Oscar Ledesma, an active advocate, and analyst in the field of politics. She began her professional life as lawyer and notary after graduating from the Catholic University of Santiago del Estero.
As a member of the Civic Front for Santiago, Ledesma's public service career witnessed a major launch in 2003 when she was elected as Citizen Ombudsman for La Banda. Two years prior to her appointment, she was assigned the position of a local infractions' Judge.
Her personal life did not lie far from politics either, as her second marriage was to the Governor of Santiago, Mr. Gerardo Zamora, who appointed her as Director of the Provincial Motor.
Claudia and Gerardo, who have three children together, succeeded respectively in the Governor and Senate elections in 2013, making her the elected Governor of Santiago del Estero Province.
Ledesma worked on increasing the educational budget in her province, alongside improvements in sewer systems, healthcare, driver safety education, and even child nutrition through a program, which provides until this day probiotic yogurt to over 47,000 underprivileged children.
The Argentinian politician kept her ties to Lebanon, her country of origin. She participates annually in Lebanese International Conferences, particularly in the Lebanese Diaspora Energy Conference that is organized by the Lebanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Emigrants.
Her participation includes discussing her role in the political landscape, her role as a woman in politics, as well as her role as a proud immigrant of Lebanese descent.