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Lawrence Official Jumps Into State Senate Race

The 2014 campaign has begun.

Pavel Payano. Courtesy Photo
Pavel Payano. Courtesy Photo
With State Sen. Barry Finegold stepping down next year, the race to fill his seat will likely garner some big name Democrats to take his seat.

One of the early faces in the race is that of a young man in Lawrence politics, Pavel Payano. Payano has decided to run for the seat in hopes of becoming the district's first Latino senator, The Valley Patriot is reporting.

The Second Essex and Middlesex District includes Andover, Tewksbury, Dracut and Lawrence. The current seat holder, Finegold, recently announced that he would run for state treasurer in the 2014 election. Before he won the seat in 2010, it was held by Democrat Susan Tucker.

Payano, 29, currently serves as vice chair of the Lawrence School Committee and works as a program manager for UMass Lowell.

Payano may be young, but he has dedicated years to politics and policy making. He co-founded the Greater Lawrence Young Professionals Network, served as co-director for one of then-presidential-candidate Barack Obama's New Hampshire offices in 2008, was outreach director for the Massachusetts Democratic Party and worked on economic development issues as a special assistant to Congresswoman Nikki Tsongas.

On his website, Payano says:

"The opportunity to serve in the legislature has been a goal of mine ever since I was a student at UMass Amherst. I would consider it a great honor to continue the legacy of service to the Merrimack Valley that Senator Finegold and Senator Tucker before him have achieved. I am prepared to serve and I know I can be an effective advocate for the needs of our Senate District. Our district encompasses one of the most diverse constituencies in the state and has a wide range of different needs. I look forward to speaking with as many residents of the district as possible in the months ahead to help me to confirm my decision sometime in January."

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