Creating a pathway for first-time candidates

Andy Vargas is a longtime resident of Haverhill, attending Haverhill's public schools before going on to Boston University. While at Boston University, Andy founded the Boston University Political Action Organization (BUPAO) and served as the Director of the Department for City Affairs for BU's Student Government. He also held internships at two offices in the Massachusetts State House, at the U.S. Embassy, and at the White House.

The Blue Lab had never run a campaign like Andy’s before. He was 21 years old and a recent graduate when he decided to run for City Council in his hometown. He faced an uphill battle as he had zero funds, no experience in an elected position, and was running for a seat on a city council that had never had a Latino member.

The Blue Lab saw an opportunity to change the political game in Haverhill. He ran his campaign out of the Blue Lab’s office and used the Blue Lab as his go-to staff. The Blue Lab ran Andy’s social media, designed graphics, and filmed video advertisements for Andy. They also served as the core strategists for his campaign and frequently collaborated in his nearby office.

In November 2015, Andy was elected to the city council of Haverhill, receiving the third most votes in the city council election (3,830) and becoming the city’s first Latino councilman. Now, Andy is working on small business development within Haverhill through a new mobile app. He is running for reelection in 2017.