Editor’s note: Photo and letter submitted by Sylvia Ruiz
I remember when my two boys were at Woodrow Wilson, and we first heard about the Boys and Girls Club. The boys wanted to go, so we went to check it out. They got into the boxing program and loved it. It was a place where I knew my kids were safe, and the people really cared about enriching kids’ lives. I didn’t want their education to be the same as everyone else who grew up in housing projects and never moved out. Now, I wasn’t the only one pushing education.
It wasn’t until recently that I found out John Stefanini helped steer my boys in the right direction when he started the Boys and Girls Club. I never realized all of things he has done that have affected my family.
He helped bring Voices without Violence to Framingham, which I’ve seen fight sexual and domestic violence around me. He has been fighting for this community, and people don’t realize it.
I recently went back to Woodrow Wilson to get involved in the charter at the very end. There I questioned John on the charter. I asked, “As I stand before the charter, all I see is white. If the city changes, are we still going to see just white?” John replied, “No, but we need people like you who will stand up for that equal representation.”
John has inspired me to talk to people about how to become involved and engaged in the community. He truly believes in me. He has led me to become an advocate for equal representation in government.
He has got a heart of gold, and he doesn’t do things for himself. He’s all heart. He stood up for my donations for Puerto Rico – there is a humanitarian crisis going on, and he stood right by. John really has reached out with the Latino community, and that makes the difference. John knows we are just as much a part of the community as everyone else.
I know John would be a wonderful mayor because he is inclusive with everyone, and he isn’t afraid to bring change to steer Framingham’s future in the right direction.
He’s ready for Framingham, and Framingham is ready for him.