Bob Massie is no ordinary candidate. Over the last three decades, he has emerged as a globally-recognized advocate for corporate accountability, global sustainability and local prosperity in the 21st century and beyond.
HOW IT ALL STARTED
Bob has spent his life anticipating the future and fighting to make it better. Born with hemophilia — a rare, debilitating blood disease —as a child, he experienced repeated painful bouts of joint bleeding that left him unable to walk. Doctors told his parents he might never walk unassisted, but he struggled to prove them wrong. His parents eventually wrote a book, Journey, about the struggles of raising a child with a painful illness and battling the health care systems. As an adolescent, his family lived in Paris where he was covered by the French national health system, and he was eventually able to roam the city on his own.
Back in the states, he became an activist at Princeton, and challenged the exclusion of women in the clubs and argued for divestment from South Africa. After college, he worked with Ralph Nader in Washington, and edited a volume on corporate power published in 1980.
He went to Divinity school at Yale, and then served as a minister in New York where he helped found a homeless shelter.
While he was traveling the world working to promote a sustainable and just economy, Bob continued to manage his hemophilia, its painful bleeds and the resulting challenges to his health and mobility. In 1984 he had learned that the blood products he needed to treat his hemophilia had exposed him to both HIV and Hepatitis C and for many years after his diagnosis, he expected his life to be cut short. His first marriage, which gave him two sons, was damaged by the strain of living with HIV and ended in 1994. Soon after that, he became the focus of studies on HIV at MGH and he learned how his unusual immune system was keeping him alive when so many others had died from the disease. In 1996, he married Anne Tate and together they had a daughter in 1998.
Determined to understand the relationship between corporate power and inequality, Bob earned a doctorate from the Harvard Business School in 1989. His dissertation picked up the threads of activism, social justice and corporate influence and he expanded it to write Loosing the Bonds: The United States and South Africa in the Apartheid Years. He was so inspired by the struggle for democracy he saw in South Africa, that he decided to run for office in Massachusetts. In 1994, he became the Democratic nominee for Lt Governor.
By then he had already embraced the crisis of climate change. In 1992, he organized a major event with Al Gore at the Science Museum, expecting that we would quickly recognize the immediate need to step up to this enormous challenge.