NECC Observer

The student news website of Northern Essex Community College, Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

Professor Padova is in the news

When NECC’s Director of Public Relations, Ernie Greenslade, was approached by international
news agency, Reuters, about speaking with a professor who’s knowledgeable about the New
Hampshire primary, she put them in contact with Richard Padova.
Padova has been an adjunct professor in NECC’s global studies department since January of
2005. He is a graduate of NECC, Salem State College, Northeastern University, and is currently working towards a second master’s degree at Salem State University. In addition to teaching history, government, geography and politics at NECC, Padova is on the Board of Directors of the Lawrence History Center and the Service Center of Greater Lawrence, Inc. He is also a member of the Andover Historical Society, the Friends of Memorial Hall Library in Andover, the Friends of Lawrence Heritage State Park, the American Political Items Collectors, the St. Alfio Society of Lawrence and the NECC Alumni Advisory Board.
During the summer, Padova provides historical walking tours at Lawrence Heritage State Park. His latest tour explored Robert Frost’s life in Lawrence.
Reuters reporter, Gavino Garay, visited Padova’s home on Feb. 6 to talk about the New Hampshire primary, and to view his collection of historical campaign memorabilia. His collection includes buttons, bumper stickers, brochures, posters and more. The items in his collection range from Franklin Pierce’s campaign in 1853 up through and including the 2016 campaigns. Padova explained that memorabilia from before 1852 is difficult to acquire as it’s not very abundant. Padova started collecting while attending Lawrence High School during the 1976 election between Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter.
Reflecting on the start of his collection, Padova said, “I started out with one campaign button for
George Wallace.” He currently has a spare bedroom at his home with a lot of items on display.
Padova explained that the American Political Items Collectors (APIC) sponsors collectible
shows around the country. New Hampshire’s chapter of APIC held a show in NECC’s
technology center on Feb. 14. Padova stated that these shows are a great way to pick up
memorabilia as there are multiple dealers that attend. Online political auction houses such as
USAmericana, Old Politicals Auctions and Hake’s are also helpful in collecting political
“I guess I just liked the idea that you can go to a rally or walk into a campaign headquarters and
just see all this information out there available on the candidates.” he stated
In addition to showcasing his collection, Padova provided analysis about the history of the
nation’s first primary, and how it got started. He also provided insight on current candidates and
how they’re campaigning.
“It’s as if the NH voters are doing the preliminary work for the rest of the country.” Padova told
Reuters, “They begin the weeding out process and they see themselves as doing a good job at
He also touched on styles of campaigning like retail politics, and working at the grassroots level.
Padova’s political analysis is no stranger to the media, as he has been quoted several times in
the Eagle Tribune as well as the Lowell Sun on various political issues and events.
The abbreviated version of the Reuters article, published Feb. 7, is titled “New Hampshire marks 100 years of primaries”. Accompanied by a video of Padova’s collection, the article features quotes from Padova as well as NH Deputy Secretary of State David Scanlan.