Denise Provost

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Denise Provost


Denise Provost is featured in a

Denise Provost is a Massachusetts legislator.

Representative Denise Provost (D-Somerville) has served the City of Somerville in many capacities over the last twenty years. For decades, she worked as a neighborhood activist, parent, and attorney in private practice. She was first elected to the Board of Alderman in Somerville in 1999, and in January 2006, Denise Provost was elected as State Representative for the 27th Middlesex District, which embraces the heart of the City of Somerville. [1]

Democratic Socialists of America

DSA endorsement

Democratic Left, Fall/Winter 2001, page 15

In 2001, the Boston Democratic Socialists of America Exec Board recommended that members vote to endorse incumbent Alderman-at-large Denise Provost in Somerville, and Felix Arroyo for an at-large City Council seat in Boston.[2]

On August 18 2001, Boston Democratic Socialists of America Summer conference voted to endorse Denise Provost and Kevin Tarpley for re-election to Somerville’s Board of Aldermen and Felix Arroyo for an At- Large seat on the Boston City Council.[3]

In her first term as one of Somervilles four At-Large Aldermen, Denise Provost has stood fast against Big Box” developers, demanding neighborhood consultation. An urban environmentalist, she has pushed for neighborhood community gardens and has been a strong advocate for expanded public transportation, calling for a T stop at Assembly Square, a Union Square stop on the commuter rail line, and a Green Line extension.

Her supporters include Boston NOW, the MA Women’s Political Caucus, and Ironworkers Local 7.[4]

DSA awards committee

Boston Democratic Socialists of America presents awards annually in memory of Eugene V. Debs, Norman Thomas, Julius Bernstein and Michael Harrington.

The Awards Committee in 2002 consisted of:

Barbara Ackerman, Doug Butler, Kathy Casavant, DSA Executive Board, Harris Gruman, Julie Johnson, Eleanor LeCain, Rep. Jim Marzilli, Judy Meredith, Marcia Peters, Ald. Denise Provost, Rep. Byron Rushing, Rep. Frank I. Smizik, Jim St. George[5]

2005 DSA endorsement

The September 2005, members meeting of Boston Democratic Socialists of America voted to endorse two candidates for re-election this November 8: Boston City Councilor At Large Felix Arroyo and Somerville Alderman At Large Denise Provost. "Both have been consistent and creative advocates for social and economic justice."

In her 6 years on Somerville’s Board of Aldermen Denise Provost has been an articulate proponent of socalled “smart growth”, in partic ular her courageous and sometimes lonely opposition to “Big Box” development in Assembly Square. She is a past board member of the Association for Public Transportation, and is pushing for a Somerville stop on the Green Line. Her supporters include Boston NOW, Progressive Democrats of Somerville and the Sierra Club.

DSAers in Boston and Somerville received a mailing endorsing both these candidates in early October, and have been participating in their campaigns.[6]

DSA "on the ground" support

According to Boston Democratic Socialists of America newsletter, The Yankee Radical, March 2006.[7]

We (Boston Democratic Socialists of America) continued our electoral work with the Massachusetts Alliance (formerly the Commonwealth Coalition), a grouping of unions, civil rights groups and other progressive forces who strive to provide effective support in a targeted number of state legislative races. Through the Alliance we strengthened our relationship with key allies and, by door-knocking, phone-banking and mailings, helped elect Linda Dorcena Forry, Chris Speranzo and Pat Jehlen to the State House. Boston DSA also supported (on our own) the successful City Council re-election races of Felix Arroyo in Boston and Denise Provost in Somerville.
Our plans for 2006 include projects voted as priorities by DSA’s recent National Convention, especially focusing on the low-wage economy (i.e., Wal-Mart, healthcare). And we’ll maintain our involvement with the Alliance—currently we’re working on the State Rep. races of Claire Naughton in Foxboro and (again on our own) Denise Provost in Somerville.

2006 Debs-Thomas-Bernstein Awards

On September 24, 2006, Boston Democratic Socialists of America presented its annual Debs-Thomas-Bernstein Award to "our longtime comrade, Director of Massachusetts Neighbor to Neighbor Harris Gruman". Hosted by former Neighbor to Neighbor Director John Maher and Co-Chaired by Senator Pat Jehlen and MA AFL-CIO Vice President Ed Collins, the event was also a fundraiser for both Boston DSA and the Mass Alliance Some Alliance endorsed candidates were among the attendees, including Denise Provost, Jarrett Barrios, Willie Mae Allen, Claire Naughton and Will Brownsberger. Political Director Georgia Hollister Isman explained how the Mass Alliance helps elect progressives to the MA legislature, and introduced some of the candidates.

Pat Jehlen and John Mayer noted how Harris combines the skills and abilities of an ace precinct captain and shrewd political strategist with a vast knowledge of the more obscure Austria, Italy, which undoubtably comes in handy on the campaign trail.

Hosts were John Maher and Ellen Sarkisian, "perennial" MC was Julie Johnson of the Mass Teachers Association and DSA, primary organizers were Susan Davidoff and Mike Pattberg.[8]

"Provost Steamroller Rolls On…"

Dick Bauer was active in the Provost campaign and is a member of UAW Local 2320. In an article "Provost Steamroller Rolls On…" in Boston Democratic Socialists of America newsletter, The Yankee Radical, March 2006, Bauer wrote;[9]

On January 10, the DSA-endorsed candidate Denise Provost won a landslide victory (62%) in the special election for State Representative in Somerville’s 27th Middlesex District. Somerville DSAers were mobilized with a campaign mailing and follow up phone calls, and several were active members of Denise’s campaign committee.
The special election was held to fill the vacancy created when Pat Jehlen was elected to the State Senate in another special election. Denise, a three-term Somerville Alderman-at-Large, was supported by Jehlen, and also by State Representative Carl Sciortino, who represents the north and west sections of Somerville along with parts of Medford. Denise now joins Jehlen and Sciortino to give Somerville one of the most progressive delegations in the state.

Having already “topped the ticket” as the highest vote-getter in Somerville’s municipal elections in November, Denise’s State Rep landslide victory now constitutes a ringing endorsement not just of herself, but of the progressive politics that she champions.

Bernie Sanders fundraiser

On June 13 2006, almost 50 supporters attended a fundraiser at the Somerville Massachusetts home of Dick Bauer and Roberta Bauer to help Congressman Bernie Sanders in his quest to become the next U.S. Senator from Vermont. The reception, organized by local volunteers as part of a national project of the Democratic Socialists of America Political Action Committee, raised almost $5,700 for the Sanders Campaign. Sponsors of the event included Boston City Councilor Felix Arroyo, State Senator Patricia Jehlen, and State Representatives Anne Paulsen, Carl Sciortino, Alice Wolf and Denise Provost. Denise Provost was also one of the featured speakers, along with DSA member Rand Wilson of IUE-CWA 201, and Bernie Sanders' son Levi Sanders. [10]

Provost was described as a "long-time ally" in DSA's Democratic Left, Winter 2006/2007.[11]

On June 13, nearly fifty people gathered at the Somerset home of Dick and Roberta Bauer for featured speakers state representative and long-time ally Denise Provost...

2013 DSA Awards

The 2013 Debs-Thomas-Bernstein Awards, sponsored by Boston Democratic Socialists of America, took place June 7.

DSA is "proud to honor three of Boston’s best activists at this year’s annual awards reception: Jennifer Doe, Shelagh Foreman, and Andi Mullin". Honorary Chairs for the event were Brian Corr, Director of the Cambridge Peace Commission; Harris Gruman, Political Director for Massachusetts SEIU; State Representative Denise Provost, and Rand Wilson, SEIU Local 888. [12]

2008 Mass Alliance

In November 2008, several candidates for the Massachusetts legislature were endorsed for the November 4 election by Mass Alliance, of which Boston Democratic Socialists of America was a member.

These included House candidates Willie Mae Allen , Cory Atkins, Jennifer Benson, William Brownsberger, James Cantwell, Lori Ehrlich, Gloria Fox, Denis Guyer, John D. Keenan, Jason Lewis, James O'Day, Glenn Pare, Matthew Patrick, Denise Provost, Pamela Richardson, John W. Scibak, Carl Sciortino, David Sullivan, Martha Walz.[13]

Supported Progressive Health Care Reform

In late 2009, Denise Provost was one of more than 1,000 state legislators to sign a letter entitled "State Legislators for Progressive Health Care Reform". The letter was a project of the Progressive States Network and was developed in consultation with national health care reform advocates, including the AFL-CIO, AFSCME, Community Catalyst, Families USA, Herndon Alliance, National Women's Law Center, Northeast Action, SEIU, and Universal Health Care Action Network. The letter reads in part,[14]

"Failure to pass national comprehensive health reform now will further jeopardize state and local budgets, undermining public services like education, public safety, and transportation infrastructure... We, the undersigned, call on President Obama and the Congress to enact bold and comprehensive health care reform this year – based on these principles and a strong federal-state collaboration – and pledge our support as state legislators and allies in pursuit of guaranteed, high quality, affordable health care for all."

"Rolling back the right"

Boston dsa april 12.jpg

On April 12 2011, Boston Democratic Socialists of America held a forum "Rolling back the right: false problems. real solutions to the Budget crisis." at the SEIU Local 888 HQ 52 Roland St., Charlestown.[15]