Press Releases

Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera Endorses Jesse Mermell For Congress

Nov 25, 2019

November 25, 2019

Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera Endorses Jesse Mermell For Congress

Rivera highlights Mermell’s work on Lawrence Leads as example of economic growth, coalition building she will bring to MA-04

LAWRENCE – Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera today endorsed Jesse Mermell to represent Massachusetts’ Fourth District in Congress, citing their work together on economic growth and leadership development  in Lawrence as evidence of her commitment to building diverse and inclusive coalitions and driving economic opportunity in Gateway Cities. 

Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera

Rivera said he sees Mermell as a groundbreaker, who will bring the same passion and results to Congress as she did for their work together on Lawrence Leads, a public-private partnership to spur economic growth for all residents of the city.

“Jesse Mermell has a record of being a progressive fighter, getting things done and breaking down silos which too often hold back economic benefits for everyone, particularly in struggling cities like Lawrence,” said Mayor Rivera. 

Rivera worked with Mermell as leader of the state’s progressive business organization, Alliance for Business Leadership, to create Lawrence Leads and unite business and nonprofit leaders under shared economic growth goals.

“When I approached Jesse and the Alliance for Business Leadership in 2017 about the possibility gap that I saw in Lawrence, they immediately jumped into action and created Lawrence Leads to spur economic growth in the city. Jesse is the progressive champion and coalition builder that the people of the Fourth District need, and I’m proud to offer her my unequivocal support.”

The endorsement is the first time Mayor Rivera has endorsed a congressional candidate outside his own district and underscores the broadening support for Mermell’s campaign. Since announcing her candidacy, Mermell has drawn significant local and state support – including endorsements from Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, former Massachusetts First Lady Diane Patrick, and former state Representative Frank Smizik of Brookline.

At the Alliance for Business Leadership’s 2017 Leader Lab, Mayor Rivera spoke to progressive business leaders about his efforts to bring Boston’s economic success to Lawrence. Inspired by the Mayor’s presentation, Jesse and ABL worked with the Mayor’s office and with The Lawrence Partnership to create Lawrence Leads, a leadership development program for a diverse cohort of 30 Lawrence business, civic, and nonprofit leaders that combines the academic rigor of Harvard Business School with experiential learning opportunities. Through the program, participants gain the skills and networks necessary to help their businesses and organizations grow while also building the cross-sectoral perspectives necessary to tackle big civic challenges outside of the workplace.

“Mayor Rivera is a passionate advocate for Lawrence and a leader across our Commonwealth. I’m proud to have worked together to build a community-driven program than invests in Lawrence’s home grown talent and provides them with access to tools they can use to take their economic and civic impact to the next level,” said Mermell. “Lawrence is a transformational example of what can happen when we work together in government, business and nonprofits toward our shared goals. Lawrence Leads has been successful because it was developed in direct partnership with diverse and committed community leaders. My experience of people-centered community engagement in Lawrence will directly inform my work in and with Gateway Cities in the 4th Congressional District.”

Lawrence is one of twenty-six Gateway Cities in Massachusetts, including Attleboro, Fall River, and Taunton in the 4th Congressional District. 

Mermell launched her congressional campaign in Fall River and has been criss-crossing the district since, highlighting the vast differences in wealth and opportunity throughout the Fourth and the need to ensure every region of the district thrives.