Citing his deep roots in the 5th Congressional District and his long-time record of taking action and delivering results for his constituents, Middlesex County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian announced his candidacy for United States Congress.
“My family’s story, like so many others in Massachusetts and across the nation, reflects the promise of the American Dream,” said Koutoujian in a video message released on Monday. “My parents instilled in me a desire to help people and to try to make a difference in people’s lives. They taught me that when you listen to people, empower people, and help them take action – you can change lives for the better.”
Koutoujian has 24 years of experience in elected office and public service. He began his career as a prosecutor before being elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives, representing the communities of Waltham, Watertown and Newton. While there he led on the causes of health care, financial services, victim’s rights and public safety.
In 2011, Governor Deval Patrick appointed Koutoujian Sheriff of Middlesex County. He then ran and was elected in his own right in November 2012 with an overwhelming 77 percent — winning every one of the 474 precincts in the county. As Sheriff, he has implemented programs to better prepare offenders for reentry into society and instituted policies to improve transparency, strengthen ethical standards and restore public trust.
Koutoujian has a passion for working on the major issues facing our state and on voters’ minds—health care, creating more jobs, and enacting effective gun safety measures. But just as important for Koutoujian are the one-on-one interactions with people that prompt important work and results.
Peter has worked on a range of these kind of issues brought to his attention by constituents including fighting childhood obesity, strengthening laws to protect victims of domestic violence, increasing mental health services for military personnel returning from combat, focusing attention and state resources to address oxycontin and prescription drug addiction and calling on the health care industry to address disparities in the health care delivery to ethnic and racial minorities.
“My focus has always been on both the major challenges facing our state and just as importantly the issues that aren’t being talked about every day, but touch people in their everyday lives,” he said in today’s video announcement. “Like Cheryl Darisse who I worked with night and day on legislation to ensure that victims of stalking were protected after the justice system failed her sister Sandra. And like the Kearney family, who lost their son in 2006 in a tragic ATV accident despite the heroic efforts of Dr. Peter Masiakos to save him. We worked together to pass legislation that will ensure that accidents like that won’t happen again,” he said.
“We are facing major challenges in Washington: on immigration, on health care, on women’s rights and the environment. And we need a strong, progressive leader who will stand up for us on those and other issues,” Koutoujian added. “And we need to know that the next representative hears the voices and sees the faces of those that they represent – and most importantly — can get things done to make their lives better. I have dedicated my life to doing just that and I am ready to bring those progressive values and a lot of hard work to Washington,” he said.