, Salem, MA


March 1, 2014

Letter: Salem lucky to have Keenan

To the editor:

Eleven years ago, my father introduced me to a man he used to coach at Salem High. John Keenan was then Salem’s city solicitor and considering running for state representative. I was struck by his enthusiasm for Salem and his knowledge of the issues facing the city and the commonwealth. When he asked if I would manage his campaign, I agreed.

John’s connections with the people of Salem are deep and personal. When he began knocking on doors, voters were moved by his integrity, his passion for Salem, and his commitment to do right by them and by our community. After his election in 2004, I was honored to join him as his legislative aide in Boston.

I had the good fortune to work for a legislator with whom I agreed on many issues — issues on which he was not afraid to speak his mind. From his early support for marriage equality, to his principled opposition to the death penalty. From allowing patients the freedom to choose medical marijuana, to a career-long commitment to end violence against women, which reaches back to his service as one of the first assistant district attorneys in Essex County’s Domestic Violence Unit. I was especially proud to work for him as he and former state Sen. Fred Berry drafted the earliest versions of the “hold harmless” law that has saved the average Salem taxpayer thousands of dollars over the last few years.

So many of the great advances in Salem over the last decade — the Ruane Judicial Center, the Salem Ferry and wharf, the MBTA garage, the new SSU library — are attributable to his leadership and hard work.

His most important legacy and positive contribution to Salem, however, will doubtless be the power plant. John has been a strong advocate for the cleanup and redevelopment of Salem Harbor Station, a billion-dollar investment in Salem that will combat climate change, protect taxpayers, ensure the reliability of our electrical grid and open up acres of waterfront property for future development, enhancing our vibrant harbor and growing our tax base.

Text Only | Photo Reprints

AP Video
Raw: Families Travel to Taiwan Plane Crash Site Arizona Execution Takes Almost Two Hours Gen. Odierno Discusses Ukraine, NATO at Forum Gaza Fighting Rages Amid Cease-Fire Efforts Mint Gives JFK Coin a Face-lift Creative Makeovers for Ugly Cellphone Towers Ariz. Inmate Dies 2 Hours After Execution Began Crash Kills Teen Pilot Seeking World Record LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors Raw: Funeral for Man Who Died in NYPD Custody Migrants Back in Honduras After US Deports Israeli American Reservist Torn Over Return Raw: ISS Cargo Ship Launches in Kazakhstan Six Indicted in StubHub Hacking Scheme Former NTSB Official: FAA Ban 'prudent' EPA Gets Hip With Kardashian Tweet Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in the Netherlands Biden Decries Voting Restrictions in NAACP Talk Broncos Owner Steps Down Due to Alzheimer's US, UN Push Shuttle Diplomacy in Mideast
Comments Tracker
Roll Call
Helium debate