Patrick Reynolds loves town government.
He has served on the town’s Board of Selectmen since 2014 and eventually became its chair. In 2019, Reynolds was part of a new form of government—one with a town manager and a council. He loves to talk about, study and implement policies he believes improve infrastructure, schools, and the economy in North Attleborough.
“Town government gets things done,” Reynolds said. “It’s not as flashy as the federal or state government, but it makes a significant change.”
Now, after seven years of public service, Reynolds has decided it’s time to move on from his role as a town councilor. In a letter to his constituents, Reynolds said he would not run for a third term as a town councilor this year, instead choosing to focus on his job as an attorney for disabled veterans.
In his statement, Reynolds wrote it was time for a change in work and to provide space for a new councilor to share their ideas to improve the town.
“It has been the honor of a lifetime to serve you and to be a witness to the incredible progress and accomplishments that so many have contributed to in our community,” Reynolds wrote. “A lot has changed in North Attleboro in these last nine years, but what has remained the same is the resolve and the spirit of this community.”
Reynolds is the only council member not running for office this year. Seven of the nine councilors are running for re-election and Councilor Kathleen Prescott has filed to run for School Committee.
Reynolds first ran for office when he was 18 years old. During his campaign for selectman, Reynolds handed out pamphlets with a photo of him in front of an old factory on East Street–a metaphor for new leadership ready to take on old problems.
“This building symbolized the direction of North Attleboro as a place where things used to be,” Reynolds said. “When I met voters, I spoke about the need to reform the way our town government operated and fix the systemic funding crisis that was crippling our municipal service and public schools.”
As a councilor, Reynolds said he is most proud of transitioning North Attleborough to a Town Council government. He views past leadership as stagnant and unable to follow through with their solutions.
“I saw for whatever reason, the town could not move forward,” Reynolds said of the old government. “That’s why I decided to run for office nine years ago.”
Reynolds said he is looking forward to seeing a renovation or rebuilding of the high school as one of his final acts as an elected official. Reynolds and seven other councilors voted to put aside $2 million in Free Cash for a feasibility study conducted by the Massachusetts School Building Authority. Despite pushback from community members, Reynolds defended his vote.
“We have so much momentum on our side,” Reynolds said. “I think we have an opportunity to be different kinds of leaders.”
While Reynolds said he is looking forward to helping disabled veterans receive benefits, he admits he will miss working with his colleagues in town government. No matter the job, Reynold said his love for town government will never leave him.
“We did and learned so many things at once,” Reynolds said. “I know a lot of people focus on the federal and state government, but fixing a road will have more impact than a bill passed in the senate.”