Michael R. Knapik of Westfield was sworn in for his tenth term as the State Senator from the Second Hampden & Hampshire District in January 2013. In 2012, he celebrated 25 years in public service and was also honored for his “Outstanding Community Spirit” by the American Red Cross-Greater Westfield Chapter.
The district includes Chicopee (Wards 1, 3, 6, 7, 8, and 9), Easthampton, Holyoke, Montgomery, Russell, Southampton, Southwick, Westfield, Blandford, Chester, Granville, and Tolland.
Since 2001, Knapik has served as the Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Ways & Means. In this position, Knapik is part of the prestigious House-Senate Conference Committee charged with reconciling the Annual State Budget and other spending plans. Having now done nine budgets, Knapik has served on more budget conference committees than any other current member of the Massachusetts legislature.
In addition to serving on the Senate Committee on Ways & Means, Knapik also serves on the Senate Committees on Ethics & Rules and Bonding, Capital Expenditures & State Assets. He is a member of seven joint legislative committees as well- the Joint Committees on Revenue, Election Laws, Consumer Protection & Professional Licensure, Public Service, Telecommunications, Utilities & Energy, Financial Services, and Veteran and Federal Affairs.
Prior to being elected to the Senate, Knapik served two terms in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, representing the citizens of Westfield and Montgomery. Knapik was first elected to public office in 1985 as a member of the Westfield School Committee. He was 22 at the time. He also worked on the staff of former House Minority Leader Steven D. Pierce of Westfield and was a General Manager with Friendly Corporation prior to entering public service.
Knapik’s legislative priorities for the 187th Session of the Massachusetts Great & General Court are job creation, particularly in Western Massachusetts, economic competitiveness, the preservation and enhancement of local aid to cities and towns, public safety, and issues concerning the elderly and veterans.
He maintains a District Office at 57 North Elm Street in Westfield, and has made constituent service a focal point of his term in office.
Knapik has been honored by several local and statewide organizations for his work in the Legislature. In 2012, Senator Knapik was honored by the MassMentoring Partnership for championing state funding and support for youth mentoring programs. In 2010, Senator Knapik he received the “Environmental Leadership Award” from the Massachusetts Nursery & Landscape Association. He was designated a “Champion of Character” by the Western Massachusetts Childcare Community in 2008. In 2006, he was recognized as “Legislator of the Year” by the Massachusetts Council of Human Service Providers. He has also been honored by both the Executive Office of Elder Affairs with the Eva Hester Award and the Massachusetts Council on Aging Coalition as “Legislator of the Year” for his contributions to issues concerning Massachusetts’ senior citizens. In May 2004, Knapik was recognized as “Legislator of the Year” for the Massachusetts Home Care Association.
He has also been honored by several veterans’ and military organizations, including the American Legion Legislative Award and the Massachusetts National Guard for his long-standing support of veterans’ matters and the Army and Air National Guards. Locally, Knapik was recognized in 2003 with the Americanism Award by the Easthampton Dalton-Lavallee American Legion Post 224 for his work on behalf of the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke and other veterans causes.
Knapik has served on several special legislative commissions charged with studying issues of great importance to the Commonwealth. Among those commissions, Knapik was a member of the Special Nursing Commission established to study the practice of nursing services in public and non-public schools of the Commonwealth, and the Foundation Budget Review Commission on Education to plan for the continued funding of education reform. He was also assigned to serve on a Special Commission to address the issues of Homelessness in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Other Commissions Knapik has served on include the Special Commission to Investigate and Study the Commonwealth’s Liability for Paying Retiree Health Care and Other Non-Pension Benefits, the Winter Energy Costs Task Force, and the Dairy Farm Revitalization Task Force.
Most recently, Knapik has been tapped to serve on several high-profile Boards and Commissions associated with restoring public trust in government. He has been a proud member of the Public Integrity Task Force in 2010, the Special Commission to Study the Massachusetts Contributory Retirement Systems in 2009, and the Probation Reform Working Group in 2011.
Knapik is a 1985 graduate of the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. He is a member of the Holyoke St. Patrick’s Parade Committee, the Easthampton Chamber of Commerce, the Galaxy Community Council at Westover Air Reserve Base, the Sons of Erin and the Slovak Citizens’ Club of Westfield.
Knapik is married to Kathleen Ann Duggan, a second-grade teacher at Franklin Avenue School in Westfield. They are the parents of Katie and Jimmy
Last Updated (Wednesday, 24 April 2013 09:47)