Legislator jumps in race for state treasurer

State Representative Tom Conroy, a four-term legislator with private-sector experience in finance and management consulting, announced Thursday he will run for state treasurer.

Conroy was among the Democrats who aimed to challenge former senator Scott Brown’s reelection effort two years ago. But he ended his primary campaign after Elizabeth Warren’s entry into the race seized much of the party’s attention and finances. Warren defeated Brown, a Republican, in the 2012 election.

Conroy, 51, of Wayland, pitches himself as a progressive Democrat who aims to maximize government’s ability to help people by making smarter financial decisions. He takes credit for authoring legislation that changed pension rules to limit abuses and that improved the state’s credit rating by better investing one-time settlements and tax revenue.


A Yale graduate, he also has a master’s degree in international economics, an MBA, and extensive experience in the financial services industry.

“It’s the right role, this is the right time, I think I’m the right candidate,” Conroy said.

Conroy, elected in 2006 by defeating an incumbent Republican, represents the towns of Lincoln, Sudbury, and Wayland in the state House of Representatives. But his resume is unusually global. He once worked in Cambodia, helping war widows and displaced people, and he established a refugee interviewing center for the Clinton administration in Haiti.

Conroy, who chairs the Legislature’s Joint Committee on Labor and Workforce Development, is leading the House effort to boost the minimum wage in Massachusetts.

He is a father of four daughters – triplets who are seniors in high school and a 12-year-old. His wife, Sarah Sewall, is a national security expert who teaches at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. She has been nominated by President Obama to be undersecretary of state for civilian security, democracy, and human rights.

Conroy is the second Democrat to enter the race for treasurer. Deborah Goldberg, an unsuccessful 2006 candidate for lieutenant governor, has launched a campaign. Chris Keohan, a political consultant for Goldberg, said the campaign has about $118,000 on hand.


Andover state Senator Barry R. Finegold, also a Democrat, has been exploring a candidacy and raising money in the expectation of a campaign, said his political consultant Dan Cence, who said Finegold has $430,000 on hand.

The Massachusetts Republican Party expects to have a candidate for treasurer, but the person will not announce until later this month, said spokeswoman Emmalee Kalmbach.

Ian T. Jackson of Arlington, a member of the Green-Rainbow party, has also filed to run.

The current treasurer, Steven Grossman, is running for governor.

Stephanie Ebbert can be reached at Stephanie.Ebbert Follow her on Twitter @StephanieEbbert