Brendan Doherty is mulling a run for R.I. governor

The former State Police superintendent has been talking to supporters about running in 2022

Former R.I. State Police superintendent Brendan Doherty, right, is thinking of running for governor of Rhode Island in 2022. Here, he attended the premiere of the movie "Vault" with former State Police major Michael Urso last June.
Former R.I. State Police superintendent Brendan Doherty, right, is thinking of running for governor of Rhode Island in 2022. Here, he attended the premiere of the movie "Vault" with former State Police major Michael Urso last June.Erin Clark for The Boston Globe

Former State Police Superintendent Colonel Brendan Doherty still has the itch to run for office.

This time, it might be for Rhode Island’s top job.

Doherty, who ran unsuccessfully for Congress in 2012 as a Republican but is now a registered Democrat, confirmed he has been having conversations with supporters about throwing his hat in the ring in the 2022 governor’s race.

“I am mulling over a possible run,” Doherty said in a text message Sunday. “It’s too early yet to commit to such an arduous task, but I spent most of my life in public service and enjoyed helping others. I also understand the daunting challenges that face our next governor and the type of leadership required to be successful.”


A South Kingstown resident, Doherty released a memoir last year and recently launched a private investigation firm. He has kept a high profile since losing to US Representative David Cicilline in 2012, endorsing Gina Raimondo for governor in 2014 and House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello for re-election in 2016.

Doherty could be a compelling option for moderate Democrats, although the field will be crowded.

State Treasurer Seth Magaziner, Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea, Lieutenant Governor Dan McKee, and Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza are among the prominent currently elected Democrats who are expected to run for governor. Here’s Ed Fitzpatrick’s full list of potential candidates.


Rhode Map wants to hear from you. If you've got a scoop or a link to an interesting news story in Rhode Island, e-mail us at RInews@globe.com.

  • Amanda Milkovits reports that state officials have put three group homes for troubled youths on probation and removed girls from a fourth home after the state’s child advocate issued a scathing report about how the homes’ operator was treating the youths in its care.
  • This week's edition of Ocean State Innovators is a Q&A with Daniel Harper, founder and CEO of Siren Marine. Have an idea for someone Ed should talk to for his weekly interview? E-mail him at edward.fitzpatrick@globe.com.
  • As the ranks of older drivers swell ― folks in their 70s, 80s, and beyond who’ve spent half a century cruising country lanes and crawling through city traffic ― many face one of the most agonizing decisions that come with aging: when, or whether, to turn in the car keys.
  • There’s a Brown University connection in my colleague Jonathan Saltzman’s story on the effort to cure one of the world’s rarest diseases.
  • US Senator Sheldon Whitehouse gets some press in Alaska, where the Anchorage Daily News covers his partnership with a Republican colleague to pass an ocean cleanup bill.
  • Winner: For best hockey player in Rhode Island history, Rhode Map readers delivered the victory to Joe Cavanagh. Thank you to everyone who voted.


Each day, Rhode Map offers a cheat sheet breaking down what's happening in Rhode Island. Have an idea? E-mail us at RInews@globe.com.

  • Governor Raimondo will speak at the Prepare R.I. employer panel this morning at the Citizens Bank complex in Johnston.
  • This sounds riveting: A special task force that is planning to recommend new rules to enhance the timely and complete disclosure of discoverable material in criminal cases will meet this afternoon at the State House.
  • The board of directors for the Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank meets this afternoon to discuss separate proposals from East Greenwich, Pawtucket, and Providence to borrow millions of dollars for new infrastructure projects.
  • Tonight at Providence Place: The Conservation Law Foundation is hosting a screening of “Dark Waters,” an environmental thriller.
  • Enjoying Rhode Map? Do us a favor and encourage your friends to sign up here.

Thanks for reading. Send comments and suggestions to dan.mcgowan@globe.com, or follow me on Twitter @DanMcGowan. See you tomorrow.


Please tell your friends about Rhode Map! They can sign up here. The Globe has other e-mail newsletters on topics ranging from breaking news alerts to sports, politics, business, and entertainment -- check them out.

Dan McGowan can be reached at dan.mcgowan@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter at @danmcgowan.