Tom Duggan’s Unexpected Legacy of Helping Our Community

Lawrence Mayor Brian DePena and Massachusetts State Auditor Diana DiZoglio at the Overcoming Obstacles Gala last year, where Valley Patriot Publisher Tom Duggan was given an “Overcoming Obstacles” Award.


By: State Rep. Francisco Paulino – 04-24

This month I wanted to take the space that Valley Patriot publisher Tom Duggan affords to me to write a column about my works and accomplishments in the community and dedicated it to him.

On March 22nd, I was honored to attend The Valley Patriot’s 20th Anniversary BASH, where Tom and his enormous team honored police officers, veterans, community leaders, and homeless advocates with awards and recognitions.

Many people may not know the real Tom Duggan, so today I wish to honor a man whose sense of purpose has greatly evolved in a way that even he never could have anticipated.

Tom Duggan, initially, might not have realized the profound implications on our community when he initiated The Valley Patriot Bash twenty years ago. This is an event designed to raise scholarship funds for underprivileged youth in the Merrimack Valley and has come to showcase Tom’s unexpected legacy of giving to others.

Known for his fearless journalism and not shying away from controversy, some only know Tom as the guy who writes award winning investigative exposes.

But, knowing him as I do, I can tell you he could never have imagined that his most significant story in life would be the impactful contribution of these scholarships to help the students and their families in need.

In less than two months, Tom Duggan’s scholarship drive for this BASH raised more than $58,000 for seven local high school students to attend college in the fall.

Tom’s narrative is continuously unfolding, each chapter bringing to life a new vision that has taken on its own momentum.

Tom, my apologies are withheld with affection as I refer to you as ‘Tommy Boy,’ for you are destined to be remembered not just as a journalist, but as a man who enabled countless individuals to pursue higher education.

I am not only proud to support this event but even more so, to stand by you, Tommy Boy and your Valley Patriot. Thank you! ◊