My Journey

My name is Melissa Murphy, and I am running for the sole Select Board seat opening for the Town of Reading in the May 14th, 2024 special election.

I am running for Select Board because I want to make a difference in this town.  I want to use my capability, energy, and ideas to help make Reading the best place for my family and yours.

For many years I have been a part of the Reading community holding multiple roles in town affairs. I have held roles in the Wood End PTO, Wood End School Council, Connect the Tots (a town mom’s group), and most recently, as a Town Meeting member for the last 3+ years.

My husband, Brian, and I moved to Reading in 2008 after an exhaustive search of North Shore communities.  With our goal of having a large family and establishing roots in the community, we knew we needed easy access to Boston and a safe community where we could raise our children near friends and family.  Reading was and has been the ideal location for our family.  We have lived in the same house since 2008 and have built lifelong relationships with people in our community over the past fifteen years.



I have a degree in criminal justice from Northeastern University.  Before starting my family, I worked for eight years as a paralegal at a law firm specializing in plaintiff civil litigation and complex tort litigation.   In 2012, I stepped back from this career to focus on raising our growing family and dove into the Reading Community happenings.  Through my education and experience, I have developed a strong background in researching and analyzing complicated issues and have cultivated an ability to clearly communicate the impacts of statutes and administrative guidelines on those issues to others.  This background will be very helpful in a role as a Select Board member.

We have raised our four children Isabelle (15), Elizabeth (13), Annaliese (11) & Thomas (10), in our home on Van Norden Road.  In addition, our home would not have been complete without our beloved Leonberger dogs, Gus and Bear.

As a Reading resident for the past 16 years, I have made many connections and relationships in our town. While balancing raising our four children, I have volunteered my time and energy to improve our town and schools as much as possible.  Starting with Connect the Tots and continuing with the Wood End PTO, Wood End School Council, and now, Town Meeting. In my time volunteering in different capacities, it is gratifying to see the difference that can be made when everyone comes together.

Unfortunately, I have also seen changes that concern me.  Over the past few years, I have witnessed a growing divide between elected officials in this Town. I intend to work tirelessly to change that.  I have also witnessed many town, and school decisions, spending, and activities become overly political and divisive.  This isn’t productive. We must return to being a town government that can simply get things done for its residents. Major national political issues and parties should not factor into the activities and decisions in Reading. ALL residents deserve a fair hearing, equal accessibility, and equal priority, no matter their viewpoints.

As a Select Board member, I would strive to ensure that all residents have a voice. I am a firm believer in communication and respect.  If elected, I promise to have a professional, respectful, open line of communication with all residents, business owners, boards, and fellow Select Board members.  Even if I disagree with your opinions, I will always honor your right as a citizen of this great country to express them.   Progress is made only when two parties recognize that a person with an opposing view is not an adversary. The best ideas often come from listening and debating.  I know we can work together!