"Please, help yourself," offers Grace Natalie as she bites into her first proper meal at 4 o’clock in the afternoon. With the 2019 elections just around the corner, there is no rest for the Chairwoman of the Indonesian Solidarity Party.

The story of how Grace Natalie caught the nation’s attention is a story of faith and curiosity. But beyond the controversies that paint her name is a woman whose beliefs never deterred her from politics. “Anticorruption and anti-intolerance,” she tells Indonesia Tatler. “Those are the core values that our party upholds. Only founded in 2014, this political party is up against seasoned players, but have already achieved wonders against all odds.”

Young Grace was an unsuspecting star—a brilliant university student who caught the eye of a local news station. Though she originally wanted to pursue accounting, she knew it wasn’t for her and leapt at the first chance of an exit plan. “I was offered a job as a reporter after winning a news-reading competition in my final year of university,” she reminisces, admitting it was one of the wisest decisions she ever made.

After eight years in the media, it was time for her next leap. Continuously craving more challenges, the prime presenter took on the role of CEO at a political consulting company, which would later mark her beginnings as a politician.

Listening to her strong and empowering speeches, one would think that Grace Natalie was born to be a game-changer. However, she reveals that it wasn’t until Jokowi and Ahok came into the limelight in 2012 that she grew to like the field itself.

This story appears in the January 2019 issue of Indonesia Tatler. For the full story, grab the copy at your nearest newsstand, or subscribe here.

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