Editor's Note: This is the first in a series of profiles TAPinto Franklin/Somerset will be publishing on candidates vying for local office in the upcoming June 4 Primary Elections.

The candidates each were sent, and responded to, identical questions and their answers are being published verbatim.

Ron Rivers, 34, is running for Democrat's nominee for State Assembly District 17, Franklin Township, New Brunswick, North Brunswick, Piscataway, and Milltown.

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Work/professional experience: 

Started a home brew supply company in North Brunswick, and also founded a civic technology non-profit that works to deepen democracy and increase engagement between candidates and voters

Why are you running for an Assembly position? 

I am running because change is coming and it's coming fast.  We need someone who understands technology and its impact to fight for progressive policies to deal with this change in Trenton.  I'm willing to work full-time as our representative as we tackle the major challenges that New Jersey faces.
What area would you focus on immediately if (when) you are voted in?  

New Jersey faces many pressing issues like climate change, marijuana prohibition, and the state of our democracy.  My first bill will be one that improves access to democracy for average citizens, and leverages technological advances to make it easier for candidates and voters to interact and connect with one another, helping New Jersey residents better understand their candidate options.  I will also be pushing a massive green energy infrastructure investment that will create thousands of good-paying, union jobs while helping New Jersey become a leader in fighting the climate crisis.