By Carley Crain
She’s the “next big Democratic star,” according to CNN, and will become the nation’s first openly-lesbian governor if elected.
Maura Healey – a former professional basketball player, Harvard graduate, and current Massachusetts Attorney General – is projected to make history this November in Massachusetts as not only the first lesbian governor of the Bay State but also as the first woman to take on the role.
On Friday, Sept. 9 Healey visited Springfield College and was a part of the school’s “9/9 for Title IX: The History of Women’s Basketball” event. Sitting side-by-side with President Mary-Beth Cooper, both women celebrated the rich history of Title IX and its importance throughout the years.
Before Healey became a political powerhouse, she shined on the basketball court as a point guard at Harvard. In the game of basketball, point guards are known to be strong leaders, as they typically run the offense and are usually the best dribbler and passer on the team.
Healey spoke about how her experiences playing both collegiately and professionally helped her transition into the world of politics.
“Being a point guard, you are responsible for everyone playing as a team, but what that really means is that everyone has their touch at the right time and for having plays go,” Healey explained. “You are the floor general, and that is something I really took to that has certainly helped me in other realms of my life.”
Inclusiveness is a large part of Healey’s campaign to become the next governor of Massachusetts. Known as the “People’s Lawyer”, Healey has dedicated most of her professional career to advocating for those whose voices may not always be heard.
Healey connected her experiences in both politics and sports to Title IX because without the landmark ruling passed 50 years ago, she would not be able to have a seat at the table. Role models also had an impact on Healey’s journey to becoming Attorney General. Seeing women take on roles of power reminded her that she could also be in that same position, which is one key part of her speech that she wanted the audience to understand.
When asked about what young people can take away from Title IX, Healey said; “Learn from the mistakes of those that came before you and do everything you can to support women and women of color, in particular, specifically those who have been left out and marginalized for far too long. You are going to have a better team, company, and organization if you embrace that diversity.”
As the midterm elections approach, Healey is on a mission to transform Massachusetts into a more inclusive and affordable state. She hopes to expand job training programs, modernize schools, protect the right to an abortion, and work to make childcare more accessible.
A recent poll showed that Healy leads the Republican nominee for governor Geoff Diehl by 18%. She could be running the point again soon, but this time for the entire state.
Photo: Carley Crain/The Student