Politics

A look at the members of Boston’s next City Council

Meet the council's five new members and eight incumbents.

Boston's city council elected on Nov. 2.
Boston City Council Race:

Boston voters have decided on their next city council — four at-large city councilors and nine district councilors.

The at-large seats will be represented by incumbents Michael Flaherty and Julia Mejia, joined by newcomers Ruthzee Louijeune and Erin Murphy.

Incumbents will retain their seats in District 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, and 9, represented by Lydia Edwards, Ed Flynn, Frank Baker, Ricardo Arroyo, Kenzie Bok, and Liz Breadon, respectively.

Brian Worrell, a fresh face in Boston politics, will be representing District 4, alongside political newcomers Kendra Hicks in District 6 and Tania Fernandes Anderson in District 7.

The new city council will come into session Jan. 3. Below, get to know the people who will make up that body.

Michael Flaherty (at-large)

Michael Flaherty – Michael Flaherty

Michael Flaherty, 52, is an incumbent at-large city councilor. He served as a city councilor from 2000-2008; he was elected again in 2013 and has served continuously since then. Flaherty received 62,242 votes, the most of all at-large candidates on the ballot, making up 17.42 of the vote.

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Flaherty listed the COVID-19 recovery and the affordable housing crisis as his top two priorities in his Boston.com questionnaire.

“In order to remain a city where individuals and families can stay and invest in their communities, schools, etc, we cannot build just for the top of the market,” Flaherty wrote in the questionnaire on the topic of affordable housing.

Julia Mejia (at-large)

Julia Mejia – Annalise Cooper (daughter)

Julia Mejia, 51, is an incumbent at-large city councilor. She was elected in 2019 and was the first Afro-Latina on the Boston city council. When she was 5, she immigrated from the Dominican Republic to Dorchester, where she lives now.

In a recent Boston.com questionnaire, Mejia said creating pathways to civic engagement and addressing achievement gaps in education are her top two priorities.

“As a parent of a daughter currently enrolled in BPS, I have seen firsthand how disciplinary practices, reading comprehension, lack of wraparound services directly contributes to the school-to-prison pipeline,” she wrote in the questionnaire.

Mejia received 61,709 votes, making up 17.27% of the total.

Ruthzee Louijeune (at-large)

Ruthzee Louijeune, 35, is running for an at-large city council seat and is a lawyer. Born and raised in Hyde Park and Mattapan, Louijeune attended Boston Latin School before moving to New York to attend Columbia University.

Louijeune previously worked for Elizabeth Warren on her presidential and U.S. Senate campaign as a senior counsel and was endorsed by Warren in her campaign for city councilor at-large. She listed housing and education as her top two priorities on a recent Boston.com questionnaire.

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“A good number of our rent-burdened working class residents could be homeowners with access to affordable products and support,” Louijeune wrote.

Louijeune received 54,601 votes. Her votes made up 15.28% of the total at-large votes, which gained her the third at-large city councilor seat.

Erin Murphy (at-large)

Erin Murphy – Jes Stout

Erin Murphy, 51, has been a teacher in the Boston Public School system for over 22 years. Murphy, a resident of Dorchester, is a graduate of UMass Boston and is a single mother to four children.

Murphy listed public safety and ensuring all city departments run smoothly as her top two priorities on a recent Boston.com questionnaire.

“I will work diligently to make sure our city departments are working for our residents and are supporting the neighborhoods,” she said.

Murphy received 42,841 votes, enough for 11.99% of the total at-large votes and the final at-large city councilor seat.

Lydia Edwards (District 1)

Lydia Edwards Lydia Edwards

Lydia Edwards, 40, will serve another term as District 1 city councilor. Edwards lives in East Boston and has served on the council since 2017. Edwards ran unopposed. She was previously a deputy director in the Mayor’s Office of Housing Stability and a public interest attorney at Greater Boston Legal Services.

Edwards listed housing and transportation as her top two priorities in a recent Boston.com questionnaire. District 1 includes precincts in East Boston, Charlestown, and the North End/Waterfront.

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Edwards is also running for state Senate, she announced in August, after current state Sen. Joseph Boncore announced he was stepping down from the position. A special election primary will be held Dec. 14 before the general election in January. If elected, Edwards will have to vacate the District 1 seat.

Ed Flynn (District 2)

Ed Flynn Benjamin Cheung

Ed Flynn, 53, is the incumbent District 2 city councilor and lives in South Boston. He has served on the council since 2017 and previously was a probation officer at Suffolk County Court and was in the U.S. Navy for 24 years.

Flynn listed equity and access to city services and pedestrian and traffic safety as his top two priorities in his Boston.com questionnaire. District 2 includes precincts in Beacon Hill, City Hall, Islands, Chinatown, South Boston and the South End.

“I represent a large population of immigrant residents, so language access is critical for me,” Flynn wrote in the questionnaire.

Flynn ran unopposed.

Frank Baker (District 3)

Frank Baker Julie Ryan Photography

Frank Baker, 54, is the incumbent District 3 city councilor and is from Savin Hill in Dorchester. He has served on the council since 2011.

Baker listed infrastructure improvements to connect neighborhoods to Columbia Point Peninsula and bringing life science industry job training programs to District 3 as his top two priorities in his Boston.com questionnaire. District 3 includes precincts in Dorchester, Harbor Islands, Roxbury/South Bay, and South Boston.

Baker received 8,486 votes, winning by a margin of 3,530 votes over Stephen McBride who received 4,956 votes. Baker received 62.84% of the total votes.

Brian Worrell (District 4)

Brian Worrell (right)

Brian Worrell, a political newcomer, is from Dorchester and is a real estate broker and small business owner, according to the Boston Globe. He will be filling Andrea Campbell’s seat on the city council, which was highly sought after she left to run for mayor during the primary election. Worrell was endorsed by Campbell.

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Worrell graduated from Northeastern University, according to the Scope. He told the Scope he hopes to bring his over 20 years of experience and understanding of the real estate industry into City Hall.

Worrell received 7,442 votes, winning by a margin of 2,845 votes over Evandro Carvalho who received 4,597 votes. Worrell received 61.62% of the total votes.

Ricardo Arroyo (District 5)

Ricardo Arroyo – Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff

Ricardo Arroyo, the incumbent, has served as a city councilor since 2019 and lives in Hyde Park. Arroyo represents District 5, which covers areas of Hyde Park and Roslindale. His father, Felix Arroyo, was also a city councilor. 

Aside from his political career, Arroyo is a public defender at the Committee for Public Counsel Services. He attended Boston Latin School before studying at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts and Loyola University of Chicago.

Arroyo defeated challenger John White with a total of 13,117 votes to White’s 4,109 votes.

Kendra Hicks (District 6)

Kendra Hicks is running for District 6 city councilor. – Jermaine Regis

Kendra Hicks, 32, is from Jamaica Plain and is the Director of Radical Philanthropy at RESIST. She will be filling the seat of Matt O’Malley, who announced last year that he would not be running. O’Malley previously endorsed Mary Tamer over Hicks.

Hicks listed the Robust Green Jobs initiative and green infrastructure, on top of everything listed in her Boston.com questionnaire, as her top two priorities.

“By implementing a paid training program, we can create work that will revitalize the neighborhoods these Bostonians call home through green infrastructure installation, climate-resilient design, natural spaces restoration, and community engagement,” she wrote.

Hicks received 13,907 votes, beating out Mary Tamer, who received 10,974 votes. Hicks received 55.71% of the total votes.

Tania Fernandes Anderson (District 7)

Tania Fernandes Anderson.

Tania Fernandes Anderson is from Roxbury and is the Executive Director of Bowdoin Geneva Main Streets, according to her campaign website. She will be filling the seat previously held by acting Mayor Kim Janey, who endorsed Anderson.

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Anderson, who immigrated from Cape Verde, West Africa to Roxbury at 10 years old, is also the first elected Muslim-American, African immigrant and formerly undocumented person on the Boston City Council.

Anderson received 7,017 votes, winning by a margin of 4,467 votes over Roy Owens, who received 2,550 votes. Anderson received 73% of the total votes.

Kenzie Bok (District 8)

Kenzie Bok – Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff

Kenzie Bok, 31, is an incumbent District 8 city councilor from Bay Village. She has served on the City Council since 2019 and previously was the Senior Advisor for Policy and Planning at the Boston Housing Authority.

Bok currently is the chair of the council’s Ways & Means Committee and its new PILOT Reform Committee and is the vice-chair of the Housing & Community Development and Community Preservation Act Committees.

A resident of Beacon Hill, Bok represents areas of Mission Hill, Longwood, Audubon Circle, Fenway, Kenmore, Back Bay, Beacon Hill, and the West End.

Bok ran unopposed.

Liz Breadon (District 9)

Liz Breadon

Liz Breadon, 62, is the incumbent District 9 city councilor and is also a physical therapist. She is from Brighton and has served on the council since 2019.

Breadon listed housing and transportation as her top two priorities in a recent Boston.com questionnaire.

Both of those issues require “partnership at the state and federal level as well as at the city level,” Breadon told Boston.com in addressing these priorities.

Breadon received 7,223 votes, defeating Michael Bianchi who received 2,819 votes.

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