EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Jamestown businessman Don Carlson announced Sunday he is jumping into the Democratic primary to replace outgoing Congressman David Cicilline.
“My family’s roots run deep in this state and in this district,” Carlson said in a statement announcing his campaign. “I will work hard every day to deliver real and meaningful results for the people of this district, and to continue the great work that was done by our Congressman David Cicilline.”
Carlson grew up in Rhode Island, graduating from Toll Gate High School before attending Williams College and Harvard Law School. He clerked for Rhode Island U.S. Appeals Court Judge Bruce Selya.
After his clerkship, Carlson served as legislative director and chief counsel for Congressman Joseph P. Kennedy II, and later led the transition for Connecticut Congressman Jim Himes after his election to the House.
Carlson currently leads the Tsai Leadership Program at Yale Law School and serves as a volunteer EMT with the Jamestown Fire Department. He has three children with his ex-wife, who now lives in Wickford.
A dozen others have announced campaigns for Cicilline’s seat or filed with the Federal Election Commission: Lt. Gov. Sabina Matos, state Sens. Sandra Cano and Ana Quezada, state Reps. Nathan Biah and Marvin Abney, former state Rep. Aaron Regunberg, former state official Nick Autiello, Providence City Councilor John Goncalves, former secretary of state candidate Stephanie Beauté, Republican-turned-Democrat Allen Waters, and political newcomer Mickeda Barnes.
No Republicans have announced campaign for the 1st District seat so far.