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Updated: August 22, 2022 / 40 Under Forty, Class of 2022

40 Under Forty 2022: Mike Nicholson

Photo | Erika Sidor Mike Nicholson
Photo | Erika Sidor 40 Under Forty 2022 winners Eric Gratz, Taylor Lacroix, Mike Nicholson, and Lauren Crossman-Nanoff pose at Old Stone Church in West Boylston
Mike Nicholson, 27
  • Title Mayor
  • Company City of Gardner
  • Residence Gardner
  • Birthplace Gardner
  • Colleges UMass Amherst, Suffolk University Law School
Click here to read about the other 40 Under Forty, Class of 2022
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Being elected mayor of a city at 25 years old is an impressive feat. Taking the reins of a city in 2020, at the beginning of the COVID pandemic and working to keep the public informed and 35,000 patients vaccinated is impressive at any age.

That is what Nicholson did. He is the youngest mayor in the state and the first Latin American elected official in Gardner’s history. His administration has partnered with private developers to purchase 12 buildings in downtown Gardner to create 35 commercial storefronts, 24 office spaces, and 108 apartment units in addition to residential development on Main Street creating another 100 market-rate units. He helped bring in a $13-million in grant to invest in the City’s infrastructure and school system. During Nicholson’s term, he’s made sure that every student has access to their own laptop device, and that, through a diversity audit, every student can find representation of their community’s stories in the school libraries.

Somehow, Nicholson has found time to earn a law degree from Suffolk University in Boston, completed at night during his time as mayor. He serves on the board of directors for the The Boys & Girls Club of Fitchburg and Leominster Gardner Clubhouse and the Gardner Square Two Inc., a local business association.

Would you prefer to live on the equator or in Antarctica? Antarctica, because there’s more room for discovery and new frontiers.

What Central Mass. historical figure do you most admire? General Rufus Putnam from Rutland, who fought in the Revolutionary War and then decided move West and settle what is now Marietta, Ohio.

What key to business success do most people not know? It’s okay to try new ideas, even if it’s not how things have been done before. People with a that’s-how-it’s-always-been-done mentality rarely succeed in new endeavors.

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August 23, 2022

Congrats, Mr. Mayor!
Many appreciate your efforts.
You are a blessing and an encouragement to many.
Keep up the good work!

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