J Lederman 2021 Headshot.jpg

About City Councilor Jesse Lederman

City Councilor Jesse Lederman is a lifelong resident of Springfield who was born and raised in the city's McKnight Neighborhood. The son of a secretary and a social worker, Jesse was raised by his mom and two older sisters after his father passed away at a young age. 

As a teenager Jesse found a second family in Springfield's activists and community leaders, who inspired in him a lifelong commitment to community, public service, and helping others.

 

Jesse is a graduate of the Springfield Public Schools, having attended Mary O. Pottenger Elementary School and the Springfield Renaissance Middle/High School. He went on to attend the George Washington University in Washington, D.C. and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he received his Bachelor's Degree in Political Science.

Jesse first became involved in civic life as a member of the McKnight Neighborhood Council, where he worked with residents to address quality of life issues in the community, bring more attention to the needs of neighborhoods, and worked to stop the construction of a demolition waste incinerator. 

 

In addition to his work on the City Council, Jesse serves as the Chairman of the Springfield Democratic City Committee, as a member of the Democratic State Committee, a member of the Board of Directors of the Springfield Preservation Trust, on the Leadership Board of Reading Success by 4th Grade, Springfield's early literacy initiative, and on the Board of Directors of the Acorn Street Boys and Girls Club Family Center. 

He is a member of the Honorary Deputy Sheriffs Association of Hampden County. Jesse formerly served on the Board of Directors of the Springfield Armory Alliance, and the Governing Board of the Springfield Renaissance School. 

Councilor Lederman became the youngest individual elected in Springfield's recent history when he was elected to one of five At-Large seats on the Springfield City Council on November 7, 2017. He was re-elected to a second term in November of 2019 and to a third term in November of 2021.

For the 2021 Session Councilor Lederman was appointed Chairman of the newly created COVID-19 Response Committee. He was also appointed Chairman of the Committee on Health and Human Services, a position he previously held in 2018 and 2019.

 

He has been Chairman of the first ever Committee on Sustainability and Environment since 2019, and serves as a member on the Maintenance and Development Committee. In past sessions, Councilor Lederman has served on the Public Safety Committee, the General Government Committee, and the Economic Development Committee. 

Jesse is employed as an advisor and recruiter for the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he works with adult students looking to complete their degrees and is based at the UMass Center in Downtown Springfield.

 

He is married to Emila (Ponikiewski) Lederman. The two met while they were students at UMass Amherst, where Emila earned her Bachelor's Degree in Economics.

 

After restoring their first historic home in the city's Forest Park Neighborhood, the two purchased a home in the McKnight Neighborhood just a few streets from where Jesse grew up, where they live with their Basset Hound, Theodore.