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Meet candidates for U.S. Rep. Niki Tsongas’ seat 

To date, one Republican and a dozen Democrats have declared their candidacy for the U.S. Representative from the Massachusetts Third District, which is becoming vacant with the retirement of Rep. Niki Tsongas. All have agreed to participate in a series of forums to be held in Carlisle, sponsored by the Concord-Carlisle League of Women Voters, Carlisle Rising to Action, and the Carlisle Democratic and Republican Town Committees. The candidates have been invited to submit short statements about their background and goals to the Mosquito.

The first forum will be held on March 9 in the Community Room at the Carlisle School, beginning at 7 p.m. Statements for the three candidates attending the event, Patrick Littlefield, Bopha Malone and Juana Matias appear below:

Patrick Littlefield

Patrick Littlefield is a longtime resident of Acton and Boxborough, where he and his wife, Amelia, raised their four sons. Over the past 20 years, he has worked as a job creator, healthcare innovator, and dedicated public servant. 

In 2003, Littlefield founded WaveMark Inc. in the district, providing software services to hospitals and medical device companies, and it was sold to Cardinal Health in 2013. Today, the company continues to operate out of Concord, employing more than 200 people in the district and worldwide.

In 2012, Littlefield joined the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs bringing his private sector entrepreneurial experience into the largest integrated health system in the country. In 2013, he became the Executive Director at the Veterans Affairs Center for Innovation, where he delivered dozens of new healthcare capabilities.

During this period, Littlefield led a team that worked with Veteran stakeholders to develop, negotiate, and ultimately gain passage of the Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act of 2017, which made Veteran appeals easier and faster. The bill gained unanimous support in Congress and was signed into law in August 2017 with broad support from the Veteran community. 

Bopha Malone

“As a refugee who came to the U.S. at nine years old with nothing, my parents instilled in me the values of hard work and perseverance. I’ve worked hard to achieve my American dream, but I understand I couldn’t have made it through hard work alone. I was fortunate to have had many supportive organizations and mentors in my corner to help me become the confident, brave, and strong woman I am today.

Now, my passion is giving back, helping people as I have been helped. Having the opportunity to serve community organizations and educational institutions over the past 20 years has been one of my greatest joys. Representing the people of Massachusetts 3rd is an incredible chance to be an even greater agent of change.

For too long, the American dream has been out of reach for many in the district, with limited access to good-paying jobs, affordable housing, education and healthcare. I am the only candidate who has experienced immigrating as a refugee first hand and achieving the American dream. Now I want to make sure everyone can achieve that same American Dream. I have been and will continue to be a voice for working families.”

Juana Matias

Juana Matias immigrated to the United States at the age of five in pursuit of the American Dream. She attended public schools and through scholarships, loans, and part-time jobs, paid her way through college and law school. 

Matias has dedicated her life to public service. She has worked as a social worker in Haverhill, Lawrence, and Lowell, and as a Justice Americorps attorney, representing undocumented children in deportation proceedings.

Then Matias ran for State Representative, taking on and beating an anti-choice, anti-LGBT incumbent. Juana is the first Latina immigrant elected to the Massachusetts State House and has been a champion for working-class families, immigrants, women, and her district on Beacon Hill.

In Congress, she will fight to ensure every person has an opportunity to achieve the American Dream, including access to a first-class education, good paying jobs, and retirement security. ∆