Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Leslie Latinecz (1926-2004)

Educator, community activist.

Born at Budapest, Hungary on 21 July 1926, where he met and married his wife, Charlotte, in 1945. They later had two children. He received a Doctorate of Social Sciences in Budapest and earned his way through university by playing for the Hungarian National Soccer Team for ten years and working on the docks. During the Second World War, he fought for the freedom of many Jews, and in 1949 joined the underground resistance against Communist rule. He was also editor of a newspaper in Budapest. During the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, the family fled to Vienna, Austria and immigrated to Winnipeg on 21 January 1960.

While furthering his English, he worked in a lumberyard and shovelled coal. His subsequent careers included mayoral assistant to Stephen Juba; director of City Welfare; and director of Continuing Education with Winnipeg School Division No. 1, making notable contributions in ESL and nutrition programs. He retired in 1988 as community liaison with the school division. He was respected for his volunteer activities as a humanitarian, child advocate, educator, advocate of multiculturalism, and mediator, often working together with fellow community activist Osmond Anderson.

He was chairperson of the Hungarian Association, founder of the Canadian Association for Community Education, and chairperson of the Manitoba Multicultural Resource Centre. He also wrote a political column for Menorah newspaper and helped to establish the Vietnamese Association. He enjoyed travelling and socializing. He was a community club soccer convener and coach.

He died at Winnipeg on 29 October 2004 and was buried in the Saint Vital Cemetery.


Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 1 November 2004.

This page was prepared by Lois Braun.

Page revised: 5 October 2020

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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