By Josh Resnek
When Vivian Nguyen was elected several years ago, her victory noted the triumph of a young college woman – a student at Babson – an Asian woman, to succeed in politics in Everett.
Succeeding in politics in Everett is no easy task.
It is a road fraught with bumps and turns.
Nguyen was able to put together a campaign team and a group of faithful followers.
She beat longtime councilor Rosa DiFlorio in a contest that pitted the new against the old, the untried facing up against the tried and true.
Now comes former councilor, Attorney Robert Van Campen entering again the Everett politic ring.
Last week, some heads turned and some eyebrows were raised when Van Campen took out papers for a Ward 5 run.
Nugyen will have her hands full with the Van Campen candidacy.
In a brief telephone interview with Van Campen last week, the former councilor said he would run an aggressive campaign to wrest the seat from Nguyen.
“I will knock on doors. I will engage with ward residents and home owners. I am looking forward to the campaign,” Van Campen told the Leader Herald.
For her part, Nguyen will not be a pushover.
Beating DiFlorio was no easy task for Nguyen, who was, at the time, 21.
With the aid of her mother, she canvassed the ward.
When all the votes were counted, DiFlorio lost convincingly and went into retirement.
Nguyen is largely and mostly quiet at council meetings.
She does not speak very much and she hasn’t placed any initiatives for the ward before the council.
Van Campen, on the other hand, will put to use his years of experience as a lawyer and as a former ward councilor.
Van Campen will not remain quiet – but he won’t bluster away either.
This should be a real contest.
For Van Campen it is a return to yesterday.
For Nguyen, it is a fight for survival against a candidate who knows the ropes.