Alan Khazei, co-founder of the City Year service program and a long-time advocate for national service, will officially announce at noon Thursday on Boston Common that he is running for the seat left vacant by the death of long-time US Senator Edward M. Kennedy, Khazei's campaign said today.
Khazei was also planning a "What Works" campaign tour across Western Massachusetts on Wednesday in which he planned to listen to community groups -- including those that help homeless veterans and children in the foster care system -- about how to solve tough problems, the campaign said today in a statement, noting that it has been circulating nominating papers for Khazei across the state.
In an e-mail to supporters today, Khazei and his wife, Vanessa Kirsch, trumpeted Khazei's "22-year track record in public service, of getting real results." Khazei has a "demonstrated ability to bring people together to work across party lines and sectors to get things done," the e-mail said.
"He is going to push a message of Big Citizenship instead of Big Government. .. Alan is also going to emphasize the need for America to become an Opportunity Society, making the American Dream real for all of our people and building a new movement and agenda to fight poverty," the email said.
Khazei would join three other candidates who are vying for the Democratic nomination. Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley, US Representative Michael Capuano, and Celtics co-owner Stephen Pagliuca have all officially joined the race. State Senator Scott Brown of Wrentham is the most prominent candidate on the GOP side.
Khazei co-founded City Year in 1988 in Boston. He's currently the founder and chief executive of the civic-engagement organization Be The Change Inc. Khazei was also a major advocate for the recently passed Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act, which provided for the largest expansion in national service since the 1960s.
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