Meet Samantha

A voice for Marlborough’s future

After successful terms on the City Council, Councilor Perlman is running to become our next Mayor.


She is driven by her commitment to strengthening our city and adding new, forward-thinking representation to local government. Sam is a proud graduate of Marlborough High School and Emory University. Throughout Sam’s personal and professional experiences, her passion for community building and public service have remained at the center.


Sam when she pulled papers to run for Mayor on May 8, 2023.
Picture of downtown Marlborough.

Sam has long-standing roots in Marlborough and the community here that raised her. It is where she took her first steps into advocacy as she and her peers reinstated a beloved administrator. At Marlborough High School, Sam honed leadership skills as an avid actress in school musicals and was nominated as a participant and then facilitator for the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA). Sam also spent five years working at New Horizons assisted living community throughout high school and college, giving her exposure to the hopes of Marlborough’s older residents and instilling in her the value of hard work.

While earning her degree at Emory University, Sam delved further into the world of grassroots organizing and public service. Sam participated in youth coalitions firsthand while studying abroad in South Africa, demonstrating how young people can make a difference in their community. Sam then continued her political exposure stateside through interning in the legislative and judicial branches in both Massachusetts and D.C. All of these experiences enhanced her understanding of how commitment to social issues coupled with collaboration and intentional relationships translate into authentic community building, a work ethic that Sam will employ as Mayor.


Sam with former Congresswoman Niki Tsongas after serving as a summer intern in her DC Office.
Sam hugging a student who won an award at her work Generation Citizen’s Civics Day.

Through her previous work in civic education and voting, Sam renewed her passion for working locally as she advocated for equitable civics education and built partnerships with government and advocacy organizations across the state and country. Whether planning national student voting summits or successfully advocating for passage of the MA Civics Bill to ensure quality and experiential civic education, Sam is invested in preparing the next generation of leaders. As a young professional living where she grew up, Sam committed herself to the civic life and community organizing of this city by becoming active in our local government, such as serving as an appointed member and later Chair of the Marlborough Cultural Council. Currently, Sam is a Public Service Scholar completing her JD/MA in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning at Boston College Law and Tufts University.

Sam is a graduate of the Commonwealth Seminar, MA Citizens Legislative Seminar and FAO Schwarz Fellowship in social impact. In 2019, she graduated from the Institute for Nonprofit Practice’s Community Fellows Program, earning a graduate certificate in Community Leadership and Social Change from Tufts University. She was also selected as a member of the 2019 cohort for Emerge Massachusetts, an organization that empowers women to run for office. In 2020, she was named one of IGNITE National’s 30 Under 30 Womxn to Watch in Politics. This past January, Sam was selected as the Second Vice Chair for the Massachusetts Municipal Association’s Women Elected Municipal Officials organization.


Sam and her Emerge MA sisters at their 2019 Class Graduation. Emerge is a program that trains women to run for office.
Sam and her BC Law classmates at an event for her Mayoral run.

Throughout law school, Sam focused on public interest work, participating as a student attorney in the Civil Rights Clinic and active member of the Public Interest Law Foundation and Environmental Law Society. She worked as a legal extern/intern at Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, Campaign Legal Center and Southern Poverty Law Center. Last summer, she received the prestigious Rappaport Center for Law & Public Policy Fellowship. For her Fellowship, Sam worked at Boston Mayor Michelle Wu’s Policy Office, which gave her another window into the day-to-day operations of local government and the importance of a community-focused mayor.


Propelled by her passion for civic engagement and community building, Sam translated her organizing and policy skills to local government. In 2019, Sam ran for office as a first-time candidate running against incumbents and other challengers for one of the Councilor At-Large positions. Her grassroots campaign where she knocked on thousands of doors to meet people propelled her to become the youngest woman elected citywide to the Marlborough City Council (see more here). Most importantly, she sees her election as the community’s seat in local government because it truly was a city-wide movement that elected her.


Sam and supporters marching in the 2019 Labor Day Parade.

She took office formally in January of 2020. Like governments across the United States, she quickly adapted to support residents during the COVID-19 pandemic as meetings moved virtual and our entire world changed. Sam was all in, helping residents file unemployment when they lost their jobs, organizing food drives to support our local pantry and dedicating hours to deliver meals to seniors and host educational online events to better understand the pandemic. As a City Councilor, Sam is a creative problem solver who prioritizes long-term planning for our city.  She is a formal member of various Council committees such as Finance, Veterans (Vice-Chair), and Legislative & Legal Affairs (Chair) as well as an outspoken voice at all Committee meetings.

Sam speaks with residents in Ward 2 in 2021.
Sam and supporters outside City Hall when Sam pulled papers to run for Mayor on May 8, 2023.
Sam and supporters when Sam pulled papers to run for Mayor on May 8, 2023.

In 2021, Sam was re-elected as Councilor At-Large, receiving the most votes of any candidate across the city. Sam continues to work for us, addressing a variety of issues in our city such as affordability, support for seniors, housing, open space protection, civic engagement, public art, city services and more. Find out more about Sam’s work on the City Council at our In the News Page. She continues to be one of the most accessible, communicative and transparent public servants through her timely constituent services, use of social media and engagement with young residents (check out Youth for Sam to learn more).

Sam is our friend, neighbor, advocate, civic educator, nonprofit professional, grassroots organizer, voice for our future and our next Mayor.

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After successful terms on the City Council, Councilor Perlman is running to become our next Mayor. She is driven by her commitment to strengthening our city and adding new, forward-thinking representation to local government. Sam is a proud graduate of Marlborough High School and Emory University. Throughout Sam’s personal and professional experiences, her passion for community building and public service have remained at the center

​Sam has long-standing roots in Marlborough and the community here that raised her. It is where she took her first steps into advocacy as she and her peers reinstated a beloved administrator. At Marlborough High School, Sam honed leadership skills as an avid actress in school musicals and was nominated as a participant and then facilitator for the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA). Sam also spent five years working at New Horizons assisted living community throughout high school and college, giving her exposure to the hopes of Marlborough’s older residents and instilling in her the value of hard work.

While earning her degree at Emory University, Sam delved further into the world of grassroots organizing and public service. Sam participated in youth coalitions firsthand while studying abroad in South Africa, demonstrating how young people can make a difference in their community. Sam then continued her political exposure stateside through interning in the legislative and judicial branches in both Massachusetts and D.C. All of these experiences enhanced her understanding of how commitment to social issues coupled with collaboration and intentional relationships translate into authentic community building, a work ethic that Sam will employ as Mayor.

Sam hugging a student who won an award at her work Generation Citizen’s Civics Day.

Through her previous work in civic education and voting, Sam renewed her passion for working locally as she advocated for equitable civics education and built partnerships with government and advocacy organizations across the state and country. Whether planning national student voting summits or successfully advocating for passage of the MA Civics Bill to ensure quality and experiential civic education, Sam is invested in preparing the next generation of leaders. As a young professional living where she grew up, Sam committed herself to the civic life and community organizing of this city by becoming active in our local government, such as serving as an appointed member and later Chair of the Marlborough Cultural Council. Currently, Sam is a Public Service Scholar completing her JD/MA in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning at Boston College Law and Tufts University.

Sam is a graduate of the Commonwealth Seminar, MA Citizens Legislative Seminar and FAO Schwarz Fellowship in social impact. In 2019, she graduated from the Institute for Nonprofit Practice’s Community Fellows Program, earning a graduate certificate in Community Leadership and Social Change from Tufts University. She was also selected as a member of the 2019 cohort for Emerge Massachusetts, an organization that empowers women to run for office. In 2020, she was named one of IGNITE National’s 30 Under 30 Womxn to Watch in Politics. This past January, Sam was selected as the Second Vice Chair for the Massachusetts Municipal Association’s Women Elected Municipal Officials organization.

Throughout law school, Sam focused on public interest work, participating as a student attorney in the Civil Rights Clinic and active member of the Public Interest Law Foundation and Environmental Law Society. She worked as a legal extern/intern at Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, Campaign Legal Center and Southern Poverty Law Center. Last summer, she received the prestigious Rappaport Center for Law & Public Policy Fellowship. For her Fellowship, Sam worked at Boston Mayor Michelle Wu’s Policy Office, which gave her another window into the day-to-day operations of local government and the importance of a community-focused mayor.

Propelled by her passion for civic engagement and community building, Sam translated her organizing and policy skills to local government. In 2019, Sam ran for office as a first-time candidate running against incumbents and other challengers for one of the Councilor At-Large positions. Her grassroots campaign where she knocked on thousands of doors to meet people propelled her to become the youngest woman elected citywide to the Marlborough City Council (see more here). Most importantly, she sees her election as the community’s seat in local government because it truly was a city-wide movement that elected her.

She took office formally in January of 2020. Like governments across the United States, she quickly adapted to support residents during the COVID-19 pandemic as meetings moved virtual and our entire world changed. Sam was all in, helping residents file unemployment when they lost their jobs, organizing food drives to support our local pantry and dedicating hours to deliver meals to seniors and host educational online events to better understand the pandemic. As a City Councilor, Sam is a creative problem solver who prioritizes long-term planning for our city.  She is a formal member of various Council committees such as Finance, Veterans (Vice-Chair), and Legislative & Legal Affairs (Chair) as well as an outspoken voice at all Committee meetings.

In 2021, Sam was re-elected as Councilor At-Large, receiving the most votes of any candidate across the city. Sam continues to work for us, addressing a variety of issues in our city such as affordability, support for seniors, housing, open space protection, civic engagement, public art, city services and more. Find out more about Sam’s work on the City Council at our In the News Page. She continues to be one of the most accessible, communicative and transparent public servants through her timely constituent services, use of social media and engagement with young residents (check out Youth for Sam to learn more).

Sam is our friend, neighbor, advocate, civic educator, nonprofit professional, grassroots organizer, voice for our future and our next Mayor.