AMHERST - The executive director of the Amherst Survival Center said she is planning to run for state representative in the 3rd Hampshire District.
Mindy Domb is the second Democrat to announce her bid. Erica Nakajima announced his candidacy shortly after the incumbent, Solomon Goldstein-Rose, left the Democratic Party.
Domb, who has been at the Survival Center since 2013, said she has extensive experience in health and human services, electoral politics and policy advocacy.
"Higher education is an obvious focus for any representative from the 3rd Hampshire District," she said in a press release. "As the largest employer and landowner, the University of Massachusetts and its campus community, as well as Amherst and Hampshire Colleges, make up a significant constituency. I am concerned about how student debt and student food insecurity not only affect the campus and our community, but how it may haunt students after graduation."
The 3rd Hampshire District includes Amherst, Pelham and part of Granby. So far, only Nakajima has pulled nomination papers for the seat. Papers don't have be to filed until May 1.
Goldstein-Rose announced in February that he was leaving the Democratic Party because he wanted to be truer to the nonpartisan spirit he has sought to embody through his legislative work.
Domb believes that decision was wrong.
"If there was ever a year when it is critical to be partisan and, in particular to be a Democrat, it is 2018," she said. "The Trump culture of hate, xenophobia, racism, corruption, war mongering, bullying, name calling, denigrating women, and attacks on facts, science, and best practices, compels us to fight back together."
"The district needs a representative who will be a voice for the needs and interests of its residents, someone with an open mind, an open heart, curiosity, and an understanding that public servants serve the public's interests," Domb said. "Un-enrolling from the Democratic party, in a highly partisan body, silences the district."
Nakajima, chairman of the Amherst Regional School Committee, finished second behind Goldstein-Rose in a six-way race to replace former state Rep. Ellen Story in the September 2016 primary. There was no competition in the general election.
The winner of the this fall's Democratic primary would face Goldstein-Rose, if he runs as an independent, and any Republican challenger in the general election.
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