David J. Allard, long time educator, Progressive Democrat and community activist announced today he is a Democratic candidate for Senate District 13 (Jamestown, Newport), the seat being vacated by Senator Teresa Paiva Weed.  Allard, age 35, currently works for the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) where he manages the state’s 3rd Grade Reading Goal. He also serves as an adjunct professor at Roger Williams University.  He is the former Outreach Manager for Governor Gina Raimondo.

Senator Teresa Paiva Weed announced  on March 22nd that effective May 1, 2017, she will accept the presidency of the Hospital Association of Rhode Island (HARI), a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to assisting member hospitals to meet the health care needs of Rhode Islanders. Paiva Weed has been the state senator from District 13 since 1992.

Paiva Weed’s resignation as Senate President has occured, her resignation from the Senate is expected to happen this week. There will be a special election for Jamestown and Newport within 90 days of her stepping down from her Senate seat, the election would likely happen after this session comes to an end (June/July).

Allard is the third Newport resident to throw his hat in the ring for the Senate District 13 seat, both John Florez and Dawn Euer announced their candidacy last week.

In his prepared statement announcing his candidacy, Allard underscored his commitment to social issues including: k-12 education, in particular, ensuring the vibrancy of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math); preservation of the environment; and heightened government transparency.  “My hope is that I can continue to be a strong advocate for the people of District 13 when it comes to issues that affect them and their families in much the same way that Senator Paiva Weed has been for the last 25 years.  Unquestionably, the citizens of this district have been well served by her leadership. I humbly ask them to support my candidacy and my commitment to continue her great work.”

Allard continued in the statement, “I’m also committed to making sure there are ample employment opportunities for our residents, particularly recent graduates.  I well remember the feeling of relocating to Rhode Island many, many years ago with the promise of a teaching job, and the sense of fulfillment and self-respect it afforded me. Anyone wishing a job should know that feeling, and as senator, I’ll work diligently with my fellow colleagues, the Governor and the local business community to make sure we explore each and every opportunity for job preservation and growth.” He cited the planned Newport Knowledge District as an example of how the public and private sector can and should work together to increase employment opportunities.

David is a former public and private school middle and high school teacher including positions at Portsmouth Abbey, Newport Met School and the Swansea, MA School Department.  Working in and around the classroom for 12 years has left David with a determination to fight for education spending which he believes translates into great opportunity for our state’s children, according to his prepared statement. He is a former adjunct professor at University of Rhode Island.

David is a progressive advocate who has been fighting for causes that matter to Rhode Islanders for years, the statement continues.  He has volunteered for Rhode Islanders United for Marriage, the Young Democrats of Rhode Island, the Middletown Democratic Town Committee, Clean Ocean Access, Rhode Island Pride, and Newport Yogis.  David also served on the Rhode Island Affirmative Action Committee for the Democratic National Committee.  He is a 2014 alum of the Rhode Island Chapter of The New Leader’s Council, an organization dedicated to creating progressive leadership in Rhode Island.

David holds a BA in Hispanic Languages and Literature from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and Master of Arts in Spanish from the University of Rhode Island. He resides on Sherman Street in Newport.

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp.  Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in...