Andy Vargas Officially Sworn in as 3rd Essex District State Representative

Andy Vargas has officially relocated to the Statehouse. The Haverhill City Councilor elected to succeed Brian S. Dempsey as the 3rd Essex district State Representative was sworn in Wednesday by Governor Charlie Baker in a ceremony attended by his family and colleagues.

“Andres, welcome to state government,” Baker told the 24-year-old House newcomer when administering the oath of office. “The Lt. Governor (Karyn Polito) and I love it when people who spend time serving and working in local government come on up here, because they bring a slightly different perspective to what life is like (locally). So, thank you for your service to your community.”

Vargas was sworn in alongside John Barrett III, who assumes his House seat after a 26-year tenure as the mayor of North Adams. He’ll serve the 1st Berkshire District.

Baker joked about the pair of newcomers’ stark difference in political experience. “John Barrett, you have youth and inexperience. And Andres Vargas, you have age and experience. Oh wait a minute, I got that backwards,” the governor said.

After taking the formal oath of office, Vargas spoke to his House colleagues and thanked his family, Council peers and coworkers at Entrepreneurship4All.

“To borrow from Isaac Newton, I stand before you today on the shoulders of giants and therefore, I’d like to recognize some of those giants. I want to begin by thanking my wife, Rikelma, the only New Yorker and Yankee fan I could ever love. Thank you for your love, patience and grace over the past couple of months. I am the man I am because of you. To my parents, thank you Mami, for teaching me that nothing in life comes without hard work and sacrifices, and to my father, thank you for showing me that public service isn’t a title; it’s something we do every day.”

Vargas also paid tribute to Dempsey on Wednesday.

“Brian Dempsey is a giant and a true public servant,” he said. “I can only promise to work just as hard for Haverhill and the people of this great Commonwealth.”

Addressing his Haverhill constituency, Vargas issued a promise to hit the ground running.

“I’ll close with a message to the people of Haverhill and the Commonwealth: Democracy is a promise -- a promise that extends beyond the ballot box and campaigns. It’s our promise we must keep every single day. I eagerly look forward to being your partner, a learner, a hard worker and a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Thank you so much.”

Elected to Haverhill’s City Council for a second term, Vargas will resign at the end of the year to focus full-time on his Statehouse duties.