Jill Stein has a running mate

Say hello to Richard Purcell of Holyoke, a former Democrat turned Green-Rainbow Party member in 2000, who is involved in various Holyoke issues (he ran for the Holyoke City Council in 2007) and who served two tours of duty in the Army.

Complete announcement:

HOLYOKE – Dr. Jill Stein, candidate for Governor of Massachusetts, will introduce Holyoke resident Richard Purcell as her Lieutenant Governor running mate to supporters this Saturday afternoon, April 3, 2010 in Holyoke. The event is scheduled to take place at 2 p.m. at the Holyoke Rows Boathouse on Jones Ferry Road.

Richard P. "Rick" Purcell is a community activist and veterans advocate. He is a former Democrat who joined the Green-Rainbow Party in 2000. Purcell is currently a member of the party's state committee.

Purcell was chairman of the "Vote No" group opposing privatization of Holyoke's wastewater treatment department. He is a member of Holyoke Citizens for Open Government and is active in Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Hampden County, Junior Achievement of Western Massachusetts, and Volunteer for Life Choice Organ Donor Bank. In 1994 he donated a kidney to his sister.

Purcell served with the U.S Army in two tours of duty totaling about 10 years. Rick served in Operation Desert Storm in Iraq as a medic. He was also stationed in Korea and Germany. He is a past three-term commander of the American Legion War Memorial Post 25 in Holyoke and served on the executive board of the Hampden County American Legion. For a year he served as Hampden County commander of 28 American Legion posts.

He was born in Albuquerque, N.M., on December 21, 1959, one of five children of James R. and Doria Ann Redstone Purcell. He lived his first 14 years on an Indian reservation straddling the border of Apache County in Arizona and McKinley County in New Mexico. After his military duty, he joined his mother and brothers in Holyoke in 1974. He is a 1977 graduate of Chicopee Comprehensive High School. Purcell has been employed at Bay State Medical Center in Springfield for 19 years, as a surgery clerk and ergonomics specialist.

Stein is enthusiastic about the strengths Purcell brings to her campaign. "I want a Lieutenant Governor who will be absolutely dedicated to the things that we need to accomplish in the next four years ' good-wage jobs, affordable health care, strong public education, an end to needless home foreclosures, and fair taxes. I've found that person. Together we're going to get Beacon Hill back to work for the ordinary people of the Commonwealth."

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