Mayor Hedlund learned the value of hard work at a young age. As a youth, he spent Saturdays helping at his maternal grandfather’s Weymouth Landing restaurant, Breakfast at Sarni’s. One month shy of his 20th birthday, he took over his other grandfather’s share of Hedlund Motor Sales, the truck and fire apparatus repair business his grandfather founded in Quincy. Bob became active in civic affairs and served as the youngest member of the South Shore Chamber of Commerce’s Governmental Affairs Committee.
As a first-time candidate for state office back in 1990, the then 29-year-old Hedlund faced a formidable field of state Senate candidates and, in a three-way primary, beat two better financed candidates by a thin margin of 39 votes. The general election proved equally challenging and though Hedlund was outspent by more than a five to one margin, he won the election and settled in for his first term as state Senator representing the taxpayers and working families of the Plymouth-Norfolk District.
After a hard fought race and narrow defeat in 1992, Hedlund spent his time away from the state house serving as the Metropolitan District Commission's (MDC's) Deputy Commissioner overseeing maintenance and operations for state parks, rinks, and beach facilities. He won back the Senate seat in 1994. Hedlund held the Senate seat, most recently serving as Assistant Minority Leader, until his resignation to become Mayor of Weymouth on January 4, 2016. He was elected Mayor on November 3, 2015, earning 70 percent of the vote.
Over the course of his Senate career, Hedlund served on numerous legislative committees, including the Joint Committees on Rules, Housing, Municipalities and Regional Government, Transportation; and Environment, Natural Resources, and Agriculture, as well the Senate Committees on Rules, Post Audit and Oversight, and Global Warming and Climate Change.
During various campaigns for state Senate and Mayor, Hedlund has repeatedly earned the enthusiastic support and endorsements of a wide-range of labor unions and locals as well as taxpayer and advocacy groups, including the Massachusetts Teachers’ Association, Carpenters’ Local 424, Boston Carmen’s Union Local 589, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 103, Massachusetts Nurse’s Association, Massachusetts Environmental Police Officer’s Association, National Federation of Independent Business, Pipefitter’s Local 537, National Association of Government Employees/Service Employees International Union (NAGE SEIU) Local 5000, Humane Society USA, Citizens for Limited Taxation (CLT), Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 888, Professional Firefighters of Massachusetts, Weymouth Firefighters Local 1616, and Wood Framers Local 723.
A Weymouth homeowner since 1987, Mayor Hedlund has called several neighborhoods of Weymouth home, including South Weymouth, East Weymouth, and the Landing. He currently lives on Longwood Road, where he has been for the last 18 years. For 25 years, he has been a proud member of the Weymouth Lodge of Elks 2232 and is also a member of the Sons of Italy. He attended Wentworth Institute of Technology, Quincy College, and the University of Massachusetts at Boston. In his free time, Mayor Hedlund enjoys playing softball, reading history, riding his bicycle and Harley, music, and especially spending time with his son, John, who was born in 2010 and appears to have inherited his Dad’s love and talent for baseball.