Lori Trahan
Lori Trahan

WESTFORD -- Consulting firm executive Lori Trahan, who served as chief of staff to Marty Meehan when he was a congressman, announced Thursday that she will run to succeed Rep. Niki Tsongas in 2018.

Trahan, a Democrat, had been fundraising for weeks while considering a bid for the 3rd District. Her Thursday announcement makes her candidacy official.

"I'm running for Congress to fight for working families who need an effective voice in Washington," Trahan said in a press release. "I will work hard for the people who are being marginalized and left behind, and I will fight for the values and economic opportunities that make this country great."

Trahan's campaign said it raised $242,000 between Sept. 15 and Sept. 30. The majority of that money came as donations from 3rd District residents in 15 communities, and 52 percent of the money came from women, her campaign said.

Trahan, 43, joins a quickly growing field of candidates hoping to fill Tsongas's seat when the congresswoman steps away at the end of her term after more than a decade in office.

Trahan was chief of staff to Meehan when he represented the 5th District, which later became the 3rd in redistricting. Meehan resigned in 2007 to become chancellor of UMass Lowell, and Tsongas won the resulting special election for his seat.

"The people of this District have been well served by Niki Tsongas," Trahan said in the release. "She broke the drought of women from Massachusetts serving in Congress and I would like to follow in her footsteps.


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In 2005, Trahan left the public sector. She worked at Cambridge marketing software company ChoiceStream and currently is the CEO of the Concire Leadership Institute, a small, woman-owned consulting firm.

Trahan cited her familiarity with the district in her Thursday announcement. She grew up in a working-class Lowell family before attending Georgetown University on a full scholarship, her campaign said.

She lives in Westford with her husband, Dave, and five children.

The following Democrats have declared they are in the race:

* Daniel Arrigg Koh, an Andover native and formerly chief of staff to Boston Mayor Marty Walsh.

* Nadeem Mazen, an Andover native and Cambridge city councilor.

* Abhijit "Beej" Das, a North Andover resident and president and CEO of Troca Hotel.

* Juana Matias, a first-term state representative from Lawrence.

The following Democrats are exploring a run, but have not formally announced:

* State Sen. Barbara L'Italien of Andover

* Former lieutenant governor nominee Steve Kerrigan of Lancaster, president of Massachusetts Military Heroes Fund and principal for Kilgeever Consulting Group.

The following Republicans have entered the race:

* Scott Gunderson of Groton, businessman, Iraq veteran who served in the U.S. Navy.

* Rick Green of Pepperell, owner of 1-A Auto and co-founder of the Mass Fiscal Alliance.

Follow Chris on Twitter @ChrisLisinski.