Met to discuss representation of low-income people on matters like evictions, heating shutoffs and hospital bills. From left to right: Michael Avitzur, Gov. Relations Director for the Boston Bar Association; Jonathan Albano of Weston, President of the BBA; Abbigail Shirk, Staff Attorney at MetroWest Legal Services; Elizabeth Soule of Waltham, Exec. Director of MWLS; me; and Joseph Sherman of MWLS.
At yesterday’s tribute to the illustrious Jay R. Kaufman, I joined State Rep. Michelle Ciccolo (Jay’s able and excellent successor) and Deborah Johnson Brown (representing terrific State Senator Cindy Friedman) in presenting the honoree with a rather rare document — a Resolution, honoring his achievements, enacted jointly by the Massachusetts State Senate and the Massachusetts House of Representatives. The lovely head of hair in the foreground belongs to the distinguished Congresswoman Katherine Clark.
Having served as chief Senate sponsor of the proposed “Act Safeguarding the Healthcare Decisions of Young Adults” and as co-sponsor of additional bills to protect the healthcare decisions of Massachusetts women and men, I’m pleased to have received an A+ on NARAL’s first-ever Pro-Choice Massachusetts Reproductive Freedom scorecard. In our state, on the healthcare front, the 2017-2018 legislative session has given us reason to hope. We passed the Contraceptive ACCESS Act, An Act to Protect Access to Confidential Healthcare (the PATCH Act), the Paid Family and Medical Leave Act, and the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act. Still, this is but a warm-up. In the next several years, as federal protections for women suffer, state government will need to fill the vacuum and preserve personal rights.
I was delighted to attend the recent ribbon-cutting for the the Anna and Neil Rasmussen Education Center at the Concord Museum (Anna and Neil in the middle, with prominent environmental attorney Gregor McGregor).
The Rasmussen Center features cultural and educational space for learners of all ages from Massachusetts and beyond. It has three state-of-the-art classrooms, including a colonial cooking space with a working hearth, a History Learning Center for up-close encounters with the Museum’s nationally significant collection, and a Lyceum lecture hall for mock town meetings, colonial dance, and public programs.
Adjoining galleries within the facility are closed for renovation, so for now the Center hosts rare objects belonging to the museum, including Paul Revere’s lantern and Henry David Thoreau’s desk.
The Sudbury Valley Trustees and OARS safeguard the fortunes of the Assabet, Concord and Sudbury Rivers. They don’t stop there; they promote statewide action on drought management, pollution programs, and climate change. Top left, my introductory remarks at a recent meeting. Top right, with Lisa Vernegaard, SVT’s Exec. Director. Bottom, the entire crew.
State Senators, ready to march. What a crowd. What a day. What spirit! What a way to mobilize for the next four years!
I recently took the oath of office to begin a new two-year term in the Massachusetts State Senate. Thanks for letting me serve. Trust me: I’m there, right in the middle.
Thermo Fisher Scientific supplies scientists with cutting-edge tools — things like gene sequencers to map DNA. The company will be coming up with the latest breakthrough tech. at its new global headquarters in Waltham. Here, welcoming Thermo Fischer alongside Senior VP Alex Stachtiaris; Mayor Jeannette A. McCarthy; Travis McCready, President & CEO of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center and State Rep. Tom Stanley.
Wolverine makes great shoes (my wife and I love our Merrells). Very happy the company’s New England operations are now in Waltham. Here I am, cutting the ribbon with the Guv, his wife Lauren, Waltham Mayor McCarthy, and the Wolverine team.
The pillars of 3rd MAD — 3rd Middlesex Area Democrats, the folks who keep my Senate district on the progressive up and up — really know how to eat breakfast and talk at the same time. Can be messy! But always fun.
My dog Juno and I joined local leaders and their pets for the grand opening of Chelmsford’s gorgeous two-acre dog park.
Under a hard rain, 360 runners hit the pavement for a Mother’s Day 5K for opioid addiction awareness. Proceeds go to Healthy Chelmsford, a local partnership. Here, with Run founders Nancy and Don Patch and Chelmsford Chief of Police James Spinney. Learn more about their efforts.
In 1966 Roberta “Bobbi” Gibb became the first woman to finish the Boston Marathon. The rules restricted the competition to men, but Bobbi jumped in at the starting line to join the male runners. She completed the course in an impressive 3 hours and 21 minutes. To mark the 50th anniversary of her trail-blazing, the State Senate honored her. Here, with Sen. Jehlen, Sen. Lewis, our honoree, and Sen. Lovely.
From Newton to Roslindale to Springfield, people are coming together to call for a price on carbon in Massachusetts, as I’ve proposed.
Each year, Massachusetts residents borrow 6.5 million items that happen to be unavailable at their local libraries. This, thanks to resource sharing among communities. I recently chatted about funding for this initiative and others with Sudbury librarians Megan Statza Warren, Esme Green and Marie Royea.
The League of Women Voters does terrific work, pushing back against global warming and unlimited money in politics. Local chapters came to the State House recently to advance these causes. Above, with team Concord-Carlisle; below, with the group from Waltham.
Many thanks to the Weston League of Women Voters of Massachusetts for hosting its recent legislative talk. State Rep. Alice Peisch, D-Wellesley, and I took questions on solar initiatives and rising health care costs, to name a few. Photo courtesy of Katherine Wolfthal of the League.
Walking the State House halls with Boston Bar Association President and Lincoln resident Lisa Arrowood. We discussed funding for legal aid lawyers, who represent low-income people confronted with non-criminal crises like evictions, heating shutoffs and high hospital bills.
Packed room at a recent Chelmsford Board of Selectmen meeting. I joined the town’s House delegation to report on the successful passage of local bills, troubling shortfalls in state “non-tax revenue” once expected from the operation of a new casino in Southeastern Mass. and pending legislation to help homeowners and businesses deal with gas leaks.