Boston turns visitor to lifelong resident and public servant
February 1, 2018
“As grateful as I am for his contributions, as inspired as I am by his professional hallmarks that have been trailblazing in their own right … what I admire most about him is the type of man that he is. His character, the type of husband, he sets an example being a father, a grandfather – so as much as we are uplifting the contributions as the public servant, what we are really doing today is honoring the man,” said Councilor Pressley as she recognized Clarence Cooper, a dedicated public servant of 50 years.
During Wednesday’s Council meeting, Cooper was honored for his dedication to public service in Boston, which began on Hubert Humphrey’s Democratic campaign in 1968. Throughout his career he has worked on the campaigns of President Barack Obama, Senator Elizabeth Warren, Hillary Clinton, and numerous others.
Cooper began working as a carpenter in 1970, eventually serving as Foreman-general carpenter and Safety Superintendent until his retirement in 2006. He was elected to the Carpenters District Council of Boston and made history as the first and only Black person to be elected to the Executive Board of Carpenters Local 67.
Cooper is one of the founding members of the Unity Sport and Culture Association and served as its president for 20 years. At this organization, he has held a senior luncheon for 35 years, the Senior Ball with B-3 police, and numerous parties for children.
He has also been the Chair of Caribbean American Political Action Committee (CAPAC) for 25 years during which he worked and orchestrated numerous campaigns and forums. He is also the founder of the New England Cricket League and a co-founder of the Boston Carnival, which began in 1973.
Cooper, who expressed much gratitude for the Resolution he received, said, “I feel so humbled and honored that such a prestigious organization, duly elected by the City of Boston, has seen it fit to honor me here. Leaving Trinidad and Tobago 51 years ago, I never thought this would occur. I thought I would come here, get two jobs, make plenty of money and run back to Trinidad and Tobago – but my friends I’ve got to tell you – Boston has a way and means of captivating the heart of anyone who comes here.”