We have to take risks ... there’s a big job to do
just managing things a bit differently or tinkering round the edges – the people of Scotland demand real change.”
Mr Leonard was a prominent trade union leader and is a former chair of the party, but was not well known by voters ahead of his election.
In 2016 he stood in Airdrie & Shotts, finishing runner-up to Alex Neil, but entered Holyrood as a regional MSP after party members placed him first on their regional list.
Of his rise to party prominence he added: “I’ve never hidden from the fact I wasn’t hugely well-known when I was elected leader, but I’m getting recognised more and people’s response has been very positive.
“I’m learning and building all the time, and it’s those small things like when people come up to you on the train, giving encouragement and saying, ‘what you’re doing is right’ that give me confidence we’re going in the right direction.”
It’s good to talk Labour leader Richard Leonard meets our reporter