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January 28, 2019
Contact: Mary Lupien

Press Release: Teacher and Activist Mary Lupien to Announce Run for City Council






Former Bernie Sanders organizer pledges to upset status quo in fight for police accountability and affordable housing.


ROCHESTER, N.Y. January 28th -- Rochester city school teacher and long-time activist Mary Lupien will announce her intention to run for Rochester City Council East District on Saturday, February 2nd, at 1 p.m. at her home in the Beechwood neighborhood. Lupien emerged on the Rochester political scene as a lead organizer of Bernie Sanders’ 2016 Presidential campaign, before her first run at Council in 2017. While she fell just shy of a council seat, Lupien surprised the political establishment by raising nearly $40,000 and amassing over 6700 votes in the Democratic primary election. “Our city is home to incredible people and promise yet our children are suffering from the highest poverty levels in the county,” said Lupien, adding,  “the same old solutions are unacceptable, and it will take a people-powered movement to build a sustainable community for our children, where housing is affordable, police are held accountable, and where the neighborhood you are born in does not determine your access to a a safe and secure quality of life.”

In 2017, Lupien gained noteworthy endorsements from local progressive organizations like the Working Families Party and RoCitizen, labor unions like Workers United, United Auto Workers, Amalgamated Transit Union and the Building Trades Council, then-sitting city council members Matt Haag, Elaine Spaull, Carolee Conklin, Attorney General nominee Zephyr Teachout, as well as a national endorsement from Our Revolution. She remains an active organizer, notably with the Police Accountability Board Alliance, the City-wide Tenants Union, Mothers Out Front and as an outspoken advocate of more accessible and affordable housing and transportation options for residents.

Moreover, she has continued to support the concept of flexible mixed-use green space at Parcel 5. Lupien was an early champion of urban green space at Parcel 5, organizing constant lobbying from residents at City Council meetings and arguing that a strong body of research demonstrates cities which invest in green urban space witness enhanced quality of life through economic investment in and around parks, increased recreation, reduced crime, and a sense of community. “We need to fight the urge to monetize, overbuild and control these dynamic spaces,” said Lupien. “Let the people decide what Parcel 5 can be. Grassroots efforts are more successful because they are authentic and bottom up instead of top down.” Lupien’s run follows a year in which a record number of non-establishment, progressive women ran for, and were elected to public office.

Lupien received her Information Technology degree from Rochester Institute of Technology and currently teaches at Henry Hudson School #28 in the Rochester City School District. She is a mother of two daughters and lives in the Beechwood neighborhood, where she will make her announcement at 1 p.m. on February 2nd, at her home at southeast corner of Parsells & Greeley.