Representative Jay Kaufman's award-winning public-policy forum, "Open House," takes a close look at the attorney general's office in the seventh forum of the 18th season, to be held Thursday, April 18, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the historic Depot, 13 Depot Square, Lexington Center.
Joining Kaufman will be Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley. As the chief lawyer and law enforcement officer in the Commonwealth, Coakley is responsible for combating fraud and corruption, protecting civil rights, promoting meaningful economic recovery, and ensuring consumer protection for all.
First elected attorney general in 2006, Coakley quickly confronted the challenge of addressing the economic crisis that gripped our country shortly thereafter.
Her office became a national leader in holding Wall Street accountable by bringing first-of-their-kind actions against investment giants such as Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs.
Overall, her office recovered more than $440 million for Massachusetts homeowners and taxpayers and helped keep more than 15,000 people in their homes.
Before her election as attorney general, Coakley served for eight years as Middlesex District Attorney.
What is overall mission and role of the Attorney General's Office? What are the parameters and the decision-making process when a criminal or civil lawsuit is brought against a company? How does the Attorney General's office work with other agencies when there is overlapping jurisdiction, like the state drug lab scandal? What are the challenges associated with public ethics laws and bringing cases against public officials?
Find out the answers to these questions and bring your own.
Open House was launched in 1995 to provide a forum for discussing the challenges and opportunities facing our community and Commonwealth. Over its 16 years, the forum has addressed issues ranging from reinventing public education to gay marriage, property tax relief to campaign finance reform, the shrinking middle class to stem cell research, the nature of political leadership to the challenges of effecting fundamental change in a democracy.
In 1997, the forum was awarded the prestigious Beacon Award, cable television's equivalent of an Emmy, as the nation's best government relations series.
The series was also named the best television series by Massachusetts Cable Television Commission. The series is produced through a partnership between Rep. Kaufman and LexMedia, which records the forums for broadcast in Lexington, Arlington and Woburn.