Virtual Speaker Series- July 1 - Daniel Rivera

Virtual Speaker Series- July 1 - Daniel Rivera
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7/1/2020 1:30 PM
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Virtual Speaker Series- July 1st - Dan Rivera


A “Lawrence Kid”, Dan is the son of a single mother who emigrated to New York (where Dan was born) from the Dominican Republic to find a better life for her family and brought her family to Lawrence to find work as a seamstress in the area Mills.

Dan went to Lawrence Public Schools and as a youth was a Boy Scout, a member of the Lawrence Boys and Girls Club, a newspaper delivery boy for the Eagle Tribune, a United States Air Force Auxiliary Civil Air Patrol Cadet, a leader in the Columbia Squires the youth fraternity of the Knights of Columbus, Co-chair of Lawrence High School Model United Nations, and high school Senior Class Secretary.

After graduating high school in 1989, Dan enlisted in the United States Army and became a Military Police Officer stationed in Germany. After a few years in Europe his unit, the 3rd Armored Division, was deployed to Iraq and Kuwait in support of Operations Desert Storm and Desert Shield. After his tour overseas, Dan returned home and worked his way through college on the GI Bill at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. While at UMass Amherst, he was elected Student Trustee, worked as a Resident Assistant, and as a staff member of the New WORLD Theater, and was able to complete his undergraduate degree in three years. Dan was the first in his family to graduate college.

Once Dan returned to Lawrence from College, he worked in different political and social services organizations including interning for then Congressman Joseph P. Kennedy II, Program Manager for Catholic Charities, Lawrence, and as a Coordinator at the Mauricio Gaston Institute, at the University of Massachusetts Boston until he landed a job as Special Assistant to Lawrence Mayor Patricia Dowling.

One of Dan’s highest honors was becoming the Manager of the Stadium Courts & Market Street housing projects at the Lawrence Housing Authority where he grew up. While at the Housing Authority, Dan went to school nights and weekends and received a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Suffolk University.

Throughout this period in his life, Dan worked on various Congressional and state-wide campaigns. After managing then Congressman John Tierney’s successful reelection campaign, Dan went to work as Economic Development Director for Congressman Marty Meehan, later joining the private sector for a career in Marketing and moving away from Lawrence. Dan has worked as a Direct and Database Marketing Manager for various public and privately held companies.

In 2008, Dan returned to Lawrence and bought his first home through the Veteran’s Home Loan program. In 2009, Dan ran for City Councilor at Large in Lawrence and won the part-time position. Dan took office at a time when there was a majority of people of color on the City Council, on the School Committee and the City had just elected its first Latino Mayor. Deval Patrick was Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and Barack Obama was President of the United States. Though the City’s leadership was diverse and ready to serve, they were confronted with a $23 Million dollar structural deficit and had to cut services,lay off workers, and borrow money to pay its bills. Because of his MBA, Dan was elected by his fellow City Councilors as Chairman of the Budget and Finance sub committee. Unfortunately, the then Mayor became a hated, polarizing, and infamous figure paralyzing and dividing the City in many ways. Dan provided key leadership in cutting budget fat in order to restore key services and personnel including $400,000 to bring back laid off police officers.

In 2011, Dan took time off from his day Job to work as a State-wide Latino Field Director for Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren’s first Senate campaign. In 2012, after the publication of Boston Magazine’s article “Lawrence, MA: City of the Damned“ captured an avalanche of bad stories about corruption and crime in Lawrence, it was clear to many that the City needed a change in Leadership. Late that year after organizing a small group of Lawrencians Dan decided to run for Mayor and to run a campaign to change the City. After 16 months of campaigning Dan beat a field of 5 in the municipal preliminary and built a coalition to go on and beat the incumbent in the general election by a 81 votes. A contentious recount ensued and in the end the Lawrence Board of Registrars verified Dan’s victory as the 59th Mayor of the City of Lawrence. In the Mayoral election of 2017, after 4 years of progress and hard work, the voters of the City of Lawrence went to the polls and re-elected Mayor Rivera to a 2nd four year term.

Dan has served the Lawrence community in many community groups and boards such as a member of the Colonial Heights Neighborhood Association, Prospect Hill Neighborhood Association, Mount Vernon Neighborhood Association, Lawrence Boys and Girls Club board, Platform Committee Member of Massachusetts Democratic State Party, Past Co-Chair of the Lawrence Democratic City Committee, Site Captain for Groundwork Lawrence’s Annual Spicket River Clean Up, Advisory Board Member for Family Service Inc., past Board President of Hope Street Youth Center and Treasurer for the Lawrence Youth Development Organization, Northern Essex Community College Board of trustees.

Dan lives in Lawrence, with his wife Paula and their son Daniel, 4 and daughter Charlotte, 2.


New England Base Camp is dedicated to serving families by providing programs and resources that enable and empower communities to work together to raise children of character. Typically, we do this through our interactive Outdoor Education, STEM and civic resources. However, throughout the “Stay at Home” season we have adapted those resources to meet needs of youth and families through virtual programs. One of those programs is our Virtual Speaker Series.

The programs can be used to enhance your child’s extracurricular activities or educational objectives. New England Base Camp is founded on the principals of the BSA curriculum and supports Scouts throughout all our programs. New England Base Camp seeks to build and support a diverse community of people who come from and interact with folks from every community we serve. Every person who participates in New England Base Camp has a right to expect an environment that is welcoming and values the richness of their lives and experience.

Each session is free, but space is limited, so be sure to register online. 

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There are no refunds.

The Spirit of Adventure Council, Boy Scout of America