Business and Government Forum-Karyn Polito
Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito was sworn in for a second term as the 72nd Lieutenant Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts on January 3, 2019, after a first term focused on moving Massachusetts forward through bipartisan, results-driven leadership.
Since taking office with Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito has visited and partnered with leadership in all 351 of the Commonwealth's cities and towns, developing close relationships with mayors, town administrators, and other municipal officials and building on a fundamental belief and understanding that the Commonwealth's success is driven by the strength of its diverse expanse of people and places.
Inspired by her time as a member of her hometown Board of Selectmen, Lt. Governor Polito has used the Community Compact Cabinet to sign agreements with every city and town to partner with state government on more than 800 smarter ways to deliver services, with more than 90 joining second compacts. Under her leadership, the Seaport Economic Council has directed more focus and support to helping coastal communities address their unique challenges and economic opportunities, including a new pilot program to support harbor dredging.
Collaborating with her STEM Advisory Council co-chairs, Lt. Governor Polito has encouraged further opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education to inspire more students to get involved in these important fields and better connect them to good careers. Having seen firsthand the transformational impact of these programs, Lt. Governor Polito is committed to continuing to increase the number of young women and underrepresented minority students engaging in STEM related fields and careers.
Lt. Governor Polito recognizes the importance affordable housing, mobility, and resiliency have to the overall strength and vitality of our Commonwealth. Lt. Governor Polito has worked closely with local officials to encourage housing production through the Housing Choice Initiative, improve roadways, sidewalks, bicycle lanes, pathways, and intersections through the Complete Streets program, and invest in on-the-ground, proactive projects to address climate change impacts through the Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness program.
As chair of the Governor's Council to Address Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence, Lt. Governor Polito and a diverse team of professionals have brought innovative approaches to combating domestic violence, including establishing a tool kit that empowers local law enforcement and victims to identify abuse and hold offenders accountable. Lt. Governor Polito is also leading the development of the first statewide public awareness campaign in almost 20 years which is expected to launch this year.
Lt. Governor Polito began her public service in local government, serving as a member of the Shrewsbury Board of Selectmen, and in 2001 was elected state representative, representing the residents of the 11th Worcester District (Shrewsbury and Westborough) for five terms. Lt. Governor Polito is a graduate of Worcester’s Holy Name Central Catholic High School, Boston College and the New England School of Law. She is a lifelong resident of Shrewsbury where she owns and operates a commercial real estate development firm and lives with her husband, Stephan M. Rodolakis, and their two children.