Roberto Jiménez-Rivera is a dad, an advocate, and a proud Chelsea resident.
He currently serves on the Chelsea School Committee and is an organizer with the Boston Teachers Union. First elected in 2019, he has been a leader in the education justice movement statewide and an advocate for Chelsea students and their families during the COVID-19 pandemic. He is now running for State Representative because it’s time for the people of this district to have a representative who will fight for them and not settle for small fixes for the urgent problems facing Chelsea and Everett.
Born in Norwood, Roberto is the son of a teacher and a small business owner. His parents moved back to Puerto Rico so Roberto could grow up around family. They struggled through job losses, mental health crises, and a lack of health insurance at various times. However, they always put him and his sister Laura first, and Roberto was often unaware of these struggles until many years later.
From early on, his parents instilled in him the importance of education. After graduating high school, Roberto left home to attend the University of Michigan, where he completed his bachelor’s degree and later a Master’s in Higher Education. He began his career in college admissions, where he worked to break down barriers for low-income students and students of color to attend college. He would grow increasingly frustrated by the industry’s lack of urgency to expanding access to these students, a sure catalyst for the community work he would soon be doing.
Roberto’s career brought him back to Massachusetts in 2014, and it was then that he met Sarah, who would become his wife a few years later. Shortly after getting married, they made the decision to settle down in Chelsea because they were looking for a community with similar values and cultures, where they could be deeply involved in community and where their children could grow up speaking Spanish.
Around this time, Roberto also began to get involved in community organizing as part of Ayanna Pressley’s first Congressional campaign. Motivated by the grassroots organizing that propelled Congresswoman Pressley to victory and his own vision for education justice, Roberto ran for School Committee in 2019, knocking hundreds of doors to engage with residents directly about the issues they face. His campaign was incredibly successful, making him the highest vote-getter in Chelsea that election. Throughout his professional career and his service as an elected official, Roberto has fought for increased state education funding, protections for workers during the COVID-19 pandemic, and investments in our crumbling transportation infrastructure.
In 2020, Roberto and Sarah welcomed their first child, Robi, into the world. This has made Roberto’s fight for a better education system and a better Massachusetts even more personal. He is now running for State Representative to fight for the people of Chelsea and Everett. Centering issues like housing, transit, and environmental justice, he will work with the people of this district and leaders from across Massachusetts to advocate for the solutions we need.