At a State House ceremony last Thursday Senator Lydia Edwards was administered the oath of office by Gov. Charlie Baker in front of a room of new colleagues, friends and family.
After taking the oath Edwards addressed the Massachusetts Senate for the first time and promised to be a hard worker and asked for her colleagues’ prayers as she embarks on a new journey in public service.
“I can only promise to do one thing and that’s to be myself and ask that you help me, pray for me, feed me because I’m a horrible cook, but also, educate me,” said Edwards “I asked for your patience, your transparency, your honesty. To my colleagues on both sides of this incredible building, especially those in the Senate, you have in me a hard worker. You have someone who likes to laugh. You have someone who wants to get things done. I won’t choose perfection over progress. I will ask that you be totally transparent with me as I will be with you. We are going to get along and we’re going to get a lot of things done. This pathway here was not easily paved and includes losses, it includes wins, it includes a lot of different things. I’m gonna keep fighting but more importantly I’m ready to go so let’s get to work.”
Edwards, who won the state special election democratic primary in December and then the general election earlier this month hails from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan where she was raised by her military mom.
“To my public school teachers, my coaches, my after school program counselor, my babysitter–thank you,” she said. “Thank you to all of those hands that helped train me in the art of social justice and service. I also want to thank the immigrant community of Massachusetts. So much of my pathway here is paved by you, paved by your struggle, paved by your resilience, paved by your fight that I was honored to be a part of. But I have to say I’ve been told consistently no matter how far I go in my life to not forget where I come from.”
Edwards continued and addressed her mother, Bridgett, “Today I look at my mother. You know, the reason why I won was because of your story. My mom, retired Master Sergeant Bridget Edwards of the United States Air Force, raised me and my sister Erica all over the world. When we landed in Michigan, she worked two jobs during the week and a weekend job. Erica and I had jobs and so much of that story is replicated in the men and women I see in my district. So much of who you are and your struggle is what I saw in the nannies and house cleaners that I represented. Because I saw you in them I fight harder because you’re in my life. You’re an excellent mother. I love you so much. Thank you so much.”