Election Series: Female Candidates for State Representative Outside of the Greater Boston Area

In Blog, Community by Caroline Smith

Last week, we covered the candidates for Massachusetts State Representative in the Greater Boston Area– and this week, we’re returning to give you some needed info on the candidates in the rest of Massachusetts. Still remaining are the female candidates for State Senate, and the candidates for other positions throughout the state.

While our She Geeks Out Panel featuring Ayanna Pressley, Brianna Wu, and Sam Hammar on August 21st is currently full, you can still sign up to be on the waitlist through the Eventbrite page.

As a reminder, you can register to vote online until August 15th, or mail in this form to register if you don’t have a Massachusetts ID. If you’re going to be outside of Massachusetts on September 4th, remember to sign up to receive your absentee ballot! Happy voting!

Candidates For State Representative Outside of the Greater Boston Area

Claire Cronin

11th Plymouth District

Claire Cronin currently serves as the Democratic State Representative for the 11th Plymouth district. She has held the position since 2012, and is running for re-election this fall. She is the first woman to serve as the House Chair of the Judiciary Committee of Massachusetts, a highly regarded position in the House, and has worked on important legislation surrounding family law, civil rights issues, and criminalization of trafficking fentanyl. She has also championed legislation benefiting veterans, and legislation aimed at increasing funding for public schools. Prior to her position on the State House of Representatives, she maintained a law practice in Brockton, Massachusetts. She has arbitrated and mediated a range of cases, including the settlement of the Massachusetts clergy sexual abuse cases.

Christina Eckert

2nd Essex District

Christina Eckert is running for State Representative in the 2nd Essex District as a Democrat. Currently, she is the Director of Development at Community Giving Tree, a nonprofit providing necessities to low-income families, including clothing, diapers, and baby equipment. She is also the co-founder and president of the Masconomet Education Foundation, a program dedicated to providing funding to education initiatives that enhance the resources available to educators, improve classroom technology, and provide unique learning opportunities to students. Her platform for State Representative centers education, healthcare, and environmental preservation. She holds a BA in English from Harvard University, and an MFA in Screenwriting from UCLA.

Emily Farrer

3rd Bristol District

Emily Farrer is a Democrat running for State Representative in the 3rd Bristol District, serving the towns of Taunton and Easton. On Beacon Hill, she wants to advocate for a living wage, the growth of small businesses, solar and wind power, and more resources towards combating the opioid epidemic. She is a lifelong resident of Taunton and a graduate of UMass Dartmouth, who wants to bring growth to her region’s businesses.

Tami Gouveia

14th Middlesex District

Tami Gouveia is running for State Representative in the 14th Middlesex District of Massachusetts as a Democrat. Her advocacy interests if elected to the state House of Representatives would include single payer healthcare, renewable energy, a living wage and paid family leave, investments in education and transportation, criminal justice reform, and keeping corporate money out of politics to better represent citizens. She was the founder of the Massachusetts chapter of the Women’s March on Washington, DC, and has served as a policy advocate for many years, including as Project Director of ReThink Health and the previous Executive Director of Tobacco Free Massachusetts.

Sheila Harrington

1st Middlesex District

Sheila Harrington has served as Massachusetts State Representative for the 1st Middlesex District since 2010, and is currently running for re-election in the position. She is also the only Republican candidate on this list. Harrington is dedicated specifically to the needs of her district, and she lives in Groton with her family. She holds a B.A. from Providence College, and a J.D. from the New England School of Law. In the legislature, she has sponsored bills to require schools to teach civics, and various bills related to family law.

Sabrina Heisey

36th Middlesex District

Sabrina Heisey is running for State Representative from the 36th Middlesex District, representing the towns of Dracut and Tyngsboro. Currently, she works at Boston Children’s Hospital, where she manages grants and budgets for scientific research. She is the founder of the Greater Lowell League of Women Voters, a director of the Dracut Mom’s Group, and an elected member of the Dracut School Committee, demonstrating her commitment to community engagement and grassroots activism. She is very dedicated to education policy reform and to advocating for a fair system of allocating funds to Massachusetts schools. As a member of the State Legislature, she would also champion LGBTQ+ rights and women’s reproductive rights, and attempt to strengthen Massachusetts gun laws. She is endorsed by various progressive organizations, including Mass Alliance, MassCare, and Run for Something.

Natalie Higgins

4th Worcester District

Natalie Higgins is running for re-election in her role as State Representative from the 4th Worcester district serving Leominster, the town where she grew up. A graduate of Boston University School of Law, Higgins has previously held positions such as the Vice President of the Board of Directors of Pathways for Change, a non-profit providing services to victims of sexual assault and abuse, and the Executive Director of Public Higher Education Network of Massachusetts (PHENOM), a non-profit to advocate for affordable and accessible public education across the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. As State Representative, Higgins promises to advocate for public education, women’s healthcare, small businesses, LGBTQ+ rights, labor rights, and affordable housing.

Cindy King

1st Middlesex District

Cindy King is running for State Representative from the 1st Middlesex District, representing Dunstable, Groton, Pepperell, Tyngsboro, and Westford. She has served on the Townsend Board of Selectmen, is a veteran and a social worker, and has worked as a counselor trained in crisis intervention for nearly two decades. Her platform for the State Legislature would center healthcare for all residents, criminal justice reform, public education, gender equality, and sustainable economic development.

Marie McCourt

2nd Hampshire District

Marie McCourt is running for the Democratic nomination for the 2nd Hampshire District of Granby, Hadley, and South Hadley.  A dedicated community activist, McCourt has served on the Granby School Committee and the Granby Democratic Town Committee. She also serves on the Executive Board and volunteers for Neighbors Helping Neighbors, a food pantry serving South Hadley and Granby residents. Her campaign places a large focus on progressive education policy, particularly as it pertains to reforming the Chapter 70 law that dictates how funds are allocated by the state. She also hopes to help increase elder and disability services, and to end food insecurity in Massachusetts.

Tanya Neslusan

1st Hampden District

Tanya Neslusan is running for the Democratic nomination for State Representative of the 1st Hampden District, representing Brimfield, Holland, Sturbridge, Wales, Ware, and Warren. Neslusan herself grew up in Wales and currently resides in Sturbridge with her wife and teenage son. She currently serves as the President of the Sturbridge Regional Huddle, Secretary of the Sturbridge Democratic Town Committee, and as a member of the Planning Committee for the Worcester chapter of Showing Up for Racial Justice. As State Representative, Neslusan will work to raise the minimum wage, invest in public education, greater support immigrants, provide single-payer healthcare, and secure voting rights.

Maria Robinson

6th Middlesex District

Maria Robinson is running for the Democratic nomination for State Representative of the 6th Middlesex District, representing Framingham. She is a former Town Meeting member, with extensive experience in energy policy and consulting. As state representative, Robinson hopes to increase access to affordable healthcare, protect LGBTQ+ rights, ensure data privacy and consumers’ rights, and create greater support systems for the elderly community. She has been endorsed by Mass Alliance, Barbara Lee, and Moms Demand Action. Robinson is a graduate of MIT, with a degree in Chemical Engineering.

Jean Strauss

5th Worcester District

Jean Strauss is running for State Representative for the 5th Worcester District, serving Barre, Brookfield, Hardwick, Hubbardston, New Braintree, Oakham, Spencer, and Ware. She is a member of the Democratic Party. Through her job as a writer and documentary filmmaker, Strauss has fought for adoptee rights for over a decade, in a dozen states. Her film, “ADOPTED: for the life of me!” was the official winner of the 2010 Kent Film Festival, and a selection in the Sedona International Film Festival and the Cleveland International Film Festival. Her platform centers greater funding for rural Massachusetts public schools, creating new economic opportunities across the Commonwealth, combating the opioid crisis, and supporting senior citizens.

Francia Wisnewski

1st Franklin District

Francia Wisnewski is running for State Representative in the 1st Franklin District as a Democratic candidate. Wisnewski was raised in Cali, Colombia, and moved to Franklin County 17 years ago. She has held positions such as Family Center Program Coordinator at Community Action, Developmental Specialist at REACH Early Intervention, and Regional Program Manager at Raising a Reader MA, and she has served on the Greenfield School Committee for over six years. In the State House, Wisnewski would support the right to a living wage, access to quality healthcare and education, government transparency, the needs of small businesses, and fiscal policy reform to help the working class.

Name District Against
Claire Cronin 11th Plymouth Incumbent
Christina Eckert 2nd Essex Open seat
Emily Farrer 3rd Bristol Open seat
Tami Gouveia 14th Middlesex Open seat
Sheila Harrington 1st Middlesex Incumbent
Sabrina Heisey 36th Middlesex Colleen Garry
Natalie Higgins 4th Worcester Incumbent
Cindy King 1st Middlesex
Sheila Harrington
Marie McCourt 2nd Hampshire Dan Carey
Tanya Neslusan 1st Hampden Open seat
Maria Robinson 6th Middlesex Chris Walsh
Jean Strauss 5th Worcester Open seat
Francia Wisnewski 1st Franklin Open seat