Letter to the Editor

A new and progressive perspective

Dear Editor: 

My name is Donna Patalano, and I am running to be the next District Attorney for Middlesex County.

I was raised by my dad, a single parent who served as a lineman at the electric company for 43 years. I attended Boston University on a scholarship, and after a decade in healthcare management, I enrolled at Boston College Law School the same year that my oldest son entered first grade. We went to buy our backpacks together that August.

A life-long Democrat and long-time Winchester resident, I have the professional experience that makes me uniquely qualified to bring meaningful reform to our criminal justice system. I have worked both as a prosecutor and a defense attorney, and will bring a new and progressive perspective into the Middlesex DA’s Office. At the Suffolk County’s DA’s office, I was the Chief of Professional Integrity & Ethics and served one term as the Chair of the Board of Bar Overseers, the organization responsible for overseeing the ethical compliance of Massachusetts’ 60,000 active attorneys. I was honored to have been recognized by my colleagues with awards for the “Best Appellate Prosecutor” and the “Unsung Hero Award.” I believe that justice, accountability, and integrity are all crucial values that need to be the focus of the criminal justice system – starting in the Middlesex County DA’s Office.

Now is the time to think about how a progressive and ethical leader can help bring about change. Recently, the legislature passed an important bill regarding criminal justice reform. This is a big step forward, but there is still work to be done. It is time for the Middlesex DA to bring criminal justice reform directly into the courtroom, where it has immediate impact on public safety and civil rights. I am excited to bring a unique perspective, focused on justice with integrity, into the Middlesex DA’s Office and into courtrooms across Middlesex County.

Today in Massachusetts, we incarcerate eight times as many black people as white people. For Latinx people, the rate is 5 times as high was white people. At this critical moment in the discourse on criminal justice reform, we need a District Attorney who is willing to lead that conversation. We need a District Attorney who is going to fight for both safety and social justice. The Democratic primary election date is Tuesday, September 4, 2018. I look forward to hearing your stories on the campaign trail and seeing you at the polls in September! Please call my campaign at 857-529-7081 if you have any questions or would like to talk about my vision for criminal justice reform in Middlesex.

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