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Republican Karen Anderson of Orange seeks 2nd Franklin state representative seat

Republican Karen Anderson, 45, is seeking the seat held by two-term state Rep. Denise Andrews in the district made up of Athol, Orange, Gill, Erving, Warwick, New Salem, Wendell, Royalston, Phillipston, Templeton, Petersham and part of Belchertown.

Anderson will hold a campaign kickoff from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday at her home at 75 East Main St.

Democrat Andrews, also an Orange native and former Procter & Gamble executive, is seeking a third two-year term.

Anderson is the second Republican challenger for the seat. Republican Susannah Whipps Lee, an Athol Select Board member, is also running. She lost to Andrews in 2012.

A Republican primary will be held Sept. 9. The general election is Nov. 4.

Anderson, a newcomer to politics, is a mother of six children ranging in age from 3 to 24 years old.

Over the past 25 years, Anderson has taught elementary school and served on the Board of Education at the North Congregational Church of New Salem. She also worked with the Franklin County Home Care Corp., the Gardner Visiting Nurse Association and Catholic Charities.

Attempts to reach Anderson for comment were unsuccessful.

According to her website, her main issues include improving the effectiveness of the state Department of Children and Families system, bringing jobs to the area and lowering taxes.

“For too long the needs of our district have been ignored by the people who are supposed to be representing us on Beacon Hill,” Anderson said in a statement. “We need someone who will be more responsible to the district’s needs. I will tirelessly work to protect our children. I will work to create an economic environment that welcomes job creation in our district ... I will work to reduce our taxes to the minimum level essential for good government.”

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