Therese Murray

Therese Murray
President of the Massachusetts Senate
In office
March 21, 2007  January 8, 2015
Preceded by Robert Travaglini
Succeeded by Stan Rosenberg
Member of the Massachusetts Senate
from the Plymouth and Barnstable district
In office
January 1993  January 8, 2015
Preceded by Edward Kirby
Succeeded by Vinny deMacedo
Personal details
Born (1947-10-10) October 10, 1947
Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Children One daughter
Alma mater El Camino College
Northeastern University
University of Massachusetts,

Therese Murray (born October 10, 1947[1] in Boston[2]) is an American politician who served as President of the Massachusetts Senate from 2007 to 2015. Murray, a Democrat, was the first woman to lead a house of the Massachusetts General Court. She represented the Plymouth and Barnstable district in the Massachusetts Senate from 1993 to 2015.[3]

Early career

Murray attended Northeastern University in Massachusetts and El Camino College in California. She has a management certification from the University of Massachusetts Boston. She was first elected to the Massachusetts Senate in 1992. She chaired the Joint Committee on Human Services and Elder Affairs (1993–1999), the Joint Committee on Insurance (2000–2003), and the Senate Ways and Means Committee (2003–2007).

Some of Murray’s major accomplishments throughout her career include Welfare Reform in 1995; a DSS overhaul in 1997; the consolidation of child care services in 1998; Mental Health Parity legislation in 2000; the Catastrophic Illness in Children Relief Fund in 2001; proposing Smart Growth affordable housing in 2004; Chapter 70 education funding reform in 2006; and a health care cost control bill in 2008 to improve cost reporting and transparency, and promote electronic medical records and uniform billing. Throughout her career, Murray has been a driving force behind children’s issues and health care reform efforts, and she helped pass landmark legislation including Children’s Mental Health and the Health Care Reform Act of 2006.

Senate presidency

Murray became Senate President in 2007. She was the first women to serve as Senate President in Massachusetts. [4]She co-authored and passed legislation in 2009 to restructure the state transportation system; oversaw a comprehensive string of reforms, including improvements in the state pension system, and our ethics, lobbying and campaign finance laws; and in 2010 passed an economic development bill and small business legislation to streamline state agencies, reduce operating costs and create new opportunities for investment and growth.

In 2011, Murray continued to lead the Senate’s reform agenda, overseeing legislation to reorganize the Trial Court and Probation Department and establish a transparent hiring process, and authoring fundamental changes in how state government operates with legislation that updates antiquated state finance laws and implements performance measurement requirements for all agencies and programs. Murray is also looking ahead to additional health care reforms that will change the current payment model to provide better care and bring down costs.

Term limits meant Murray could not serve as Senate President beyond 2015. Consequently, she considered whether to run for re-election to the Senate or run for Governor of Massachusetts in 2014.[5] Instead she chose to retire and was succeeded by Vinny deMacedo.

Campaign contributors

In 2008 Murray was the top Massachusetts state legislative official recipient of lobbyist donations.[6] According to campaign finance reports, casino lobbying interests were among the largest special interest group donating to Murray in 2009.[7]

Personal life

Murray is a 36-year resident of Plymouth and the mother of one daughter.


  1. Carr, Howie (April 5, 2009). "New cover-up hits Senate - Ladies, how many candles?". Boston Herald.
  2. Public Officers of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. 1993.
  3. LeBlanc, Steve (2007-03-21). "Murray elected to replace Travaglini as Senate president". Associated Press.
  4. Saying goodbye to Beacon Hill
  5. Murphy, Matt (June 17, 2013). "Murray says 'many' have asked her to run for governor". Lowell Sun. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  6. Therese Murray Leads in Lobbyist Largess, Patriot Ledger, January 2, 2009.
  7. Gambling lobby spends big in Massachusetts Eagle Tribune, March 10, 2010.

Political offices
Preceded by
Robert Travaglini
President of the Massachusetts Senate
Succeeded by
Stan Rosenberg
Preceded by
Mark Montigny
Chairman of the Massachusetts Senate Ways and Means Committee
Succeeded by
Steven C. Panagiotakos
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