My name is Will Brownsberger, and I want to introduce myself to residents of Watertown as a candidate for State Senate. As State Senator, I will draw on 30 years of experience in business, law and state/local government.
I grew up in Watertown and live in Belmont with my wife and youngest daughter. We live in a two-family house, upstairs from my parents who recently moved from Watertown to join us. My middle daughter is in college and my eldest daughter is a civil engineer.
In my first job out of college, I was a research associate at the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation. There, I wrote about tax policy and regional economic issues, and computerized MTF’s manual collection of municipal financial data, making it more accessible.
In law school, I focused on state/local finance and criminal justice. After clerking for a year in Federal District Court, I went to work in the public finance department of an investment bank. In 1992, I returned to the Boston area as an Assistant Attorney General under Scott Harshbarger, focusing first on consumer protection, and then on narcotics enforcement. During my years as a prosecutor, I joined an interdisciplinary working group at Harvard developing policy ideas on addiction control. Over a 10 year period, I became co-chair of the group. I taught, consulted and conducted research on sentencing and alternative approaches to controlling substance abuse among criminal offenders. The work I did on mandatory sentencing won national recognition, and my recommendations made their way into Governor Patrick's recent sentencing reform proposal.
In 2001, I started working with indigent criminal defendants who were wrestling with addictions in drug court. My five years as a defense attorney gave me a much deeper appreciation of how much it means to be an American citizen with constitutionally-protected privacy, dignity and security.
When we settled in Belmont in 1992, we had two daughters, aged one and four. I quickly got involved in the town, focused on traffic safety and schools. In 1998, I ran for selectman and won, defeating an incumbent. In 2002, I became chair of the Board of Selectmen. Over my nine years on the board, I worked closely with my colleagues to assure adequate education resources and to develop a long-term financial plan to meet both the capital and operating needs of the town. I also worked hard to protect open space, while revitalizing our core business areas. As a result of the restaurant alcohol licensing which I campaigned to introduce, Belmont's restaurants are much more vibrant than when I was elected.
In 2006, I was elected State Representative. I have consistently made transparency and good\ communication with my constituents a top priority — I am accessible through every available channel, run a very high quality discussion website, willbrownsberger.com, and often publish analysis of complex financial data which is useful to my colleagues and my constituents.
I've developed a deep sense of the role, the limits and the positive value of state and local government. In tough times, it is more important than ever that government focuses and delivers on its core missions: transparency, fiscal responsibility, public safety, education, infrastructure, environmental protection and protecting the vulnerable.
Based on my three decades of experience, I am uniquely prepared to contribute to government's important missions at the state level as a State Senator.