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Mazen exploring run for Tsongas’ congressional seat

Cambridge City Councilor Nadeem A. Mazen.John Blanding/Globe Staff/File

Cambridge City Councilor Nadeem A. Mazen, the state’s highest-profile Muslim elected official, who had planned to run against US Representative Michael E. Capuano in next year’s Democratic primary, now has his eyes set on a different congressional seat.

On Thursday, he filed a statement of candidacy to run for the Lowell-anchored Third Congressional District seat held by US Representative Niki Tsongas, who is retiring.

Should Mazen make the announcement official, he’ll join a field of several other Democrats hoping to succeed Tsongas in the Democratic-leaning district, which runs along the New Hampshire border from Haverhill to Winchendon, and south to Marlborough and Hudson.


“In my hometown of Andover and across the Third Congressional District, I hear from residents who are renewing their participation in community building — across racial, socioeconomic, and town lines,” he said in a telephone call Friday, reading a prepared statement. “This is the mission I have dedicated my life to, through work in social entrepreneurship, education, and government.”

Mazen, 34, said he will “share an announcement regarding my upcoming campaign plans at the Andover Town House” on Oct. 1.

Mazen, whose family moved from Illinois to Andover when he was 5, is the son of an Egypt-born father and Indiana-born mother. He graduated from Phillips Academy Andover in 2002 and from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2006 with a degree in mechanical engineering.

The founder and chief executive of Nimblebot, a creative agency that makes animated content for technology, nonprofit, education, and government clients, Mazen won a seat on Cambridge City Council in 2013. He was reelected in 2015 and announced this spring he would not seek reelection.

Joshua Miller can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @jm_bos and subscribe to his weekday e-mail update on politics at