Alumni in the News

A Brandeisian in the Massachusetts Senate

Becca Rausch

To say Becca Rausch '01 didn’t have an eye toward a career in politics while she was a student at Brandeis would be an understatement.

"If someone asked me back then if I thought I would serve in the Massachusetts Senate, the same body that John Quincy Adams legislated in, I would have laughed," Rausch said. "Heartily."

But her campaign for state senate was no joke. Rausch and her team – including Brandeis classmate Jaclyn Tetenbaum-Novatt ’01 as its events coordinator -- held numerous events and knocked on thousands of doors around the Norfolk, Bristol and Middlesex Senate District, which spans 12 communities between Worcester and Boston and as far south as the Rhode Island border.

"When you are new on the scene, getting your name out is huge," Rausch said. “We were doing everything we could think of.”

Campaigning on positions like improving transparency and accountability, mandatory paid parental leave, and intersectional social justice reforms, Rausch fought her way through a crowded and competitive Democratic primary, securing her victory with over 50 percent of the vote.

In November’s general election, she knocked off a four-term incumbent Republican who previously served an additional three terms in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, winning by roughly 2,000 votes, or two percentage points. Rausch was the only Massachusetts State Senate candidate to flip a seat in the 2018 elections. She is now one of two Brandeis alumni serving in the Senate —Republican Dean Tran '97 of Fitchburg was elected in 2017.

She had no previous campaign experience before becoming an elected member of Needham's Town Meeting in 2017. After encouragement from friends, family, and community members, she decided to pursue higher office and run for the Senate seat, which had been held by Republican Richard Ross since 2010 and was previously held by Scott Brown, a Republican later elected to the U.S. Senate.

Read the full story on BrandeisNOW.

Categories: Alumni in the News
Date: January 29, 2019