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The 192nd General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Representative James M. Cantwell Served 2009 - 2018 Democrat - 4th Plymouth

Photo of  James M. Cantwell

State House

24 Beacon St.
Room 136
Boston, MA, 02133

Jim Cantwell is a Marshfield native and life-long resident of the South Shore. Jim and his wife, Jennifer, are proud parents of a son, Christopher, who attends Marshfield public schools.

Jim's passion for public service was sparked a quarter century ago while a sophomore at Marshfield High School. Alarmed at reports of water contamination near his Webster Street neighborhood, Jim joined a grass-roots effort to force a developer to remove piping lined with cancer-causing TCE chemicals.

In college, Jim spearheaded an effort to prevent the historic Daniel Webster estate from being demolished in favor of a high-density condominium development. Jim formed the Daniel Webster Preservation Trust, a grass-roots organization that stopped the proposed development and successfully advocated for the purchase of the historic estate. Jim's crusade with many other community leaders was featured on Bob Villa's "Restore America" Series.

As a Selectman in the town of Marshfield, Jim was known as a consensus builder who helped bring people together to advocate for a much-needed school expansion, infrastructure improvements, sea wall repairs, public safety services and expanded Senior Services, while keeping within the fiscal restraints of Proposition 2 1/2 for all operating budgets.

As an Assistant District Attorney, Jim was an original co-coordinator of the Norfolk County Juvenile Justice Unit, a now model program that prosecutes the most dangerous youthful offenders as adults, while working to prevent juvenile crime through a partnership with school, police and community organizations. In his three years as an Assistant D.A. Jim also served as a lead prosecutor in the nationally recognized Domestic Violence Prevention program. He has been appointed a Special Prosecutor for Suffolk County twice .

Following his service in the D.A.'s office, Jim joined the staff of U. S. Congressman William Delahunt, where he worked to expose the high cost of pharmaceutical drugs for senior citizens and tackled coastline and seawall issues.

As the co-owner and partner of Graeber, Davis and Cantwell, a small general-practice law firm with fourteen employees, Jim understands the many challenges facing small businesses, and has brought some significant business experience to Beacon Hill.

Personal Information


Legislator; Small Business Owner





Career Highlights

  • Created a Seafood Commission to assist Massachusetts Seafood Industry
  • Lead sponsor of legislation to assist coastal communities in making repairs for seawalls
  • Worked for enactment of legislation to provide relief to small businesses for health
  • Successfully promoted passage of a landmark Economic Development bill; Secured funding for Rte 139 expansion and improvements

Education & Public Service

  • Boston College Law School 1994
  • Boston College 1988
  • University of Paris 1987
  • Marshfield Public Schools 1984
  • Elected to Massachusetts House of Representatives, 2008-present
  • Attorney on staff of U.S. Representative William Delahunt 1998-2000
  • Assistant District Attorney for Norfolk County 1995-1998
  • Selectman, Town of Marshfield 1996-1999