Matt Castriotta, 48, and his wife, Wendy, a kindergarten teacher have three children, Caroline, 14, Ryan, 11, and 8 year old, Shea. Matt was raised in Barre, Massachusetts, the 5th of seven children of Ray and Gloria Castriotta. Ray taught school for 33 years, served as a scout leader and on the board of the Barre Boy’s Club, while Gloria, a social worker, became a stay-at-home mom who focused on family and community activities. Both parents have served to inspire Matt throughout his life.
After graduating Quabbin Regional High School (Class of 1984), Matt attended Babson College in Wellesley, Massachusetts where he studied finance and political science and spent a semester abroad as a political intern in London, England.
While in college, Matt focused on developing entrepreneurship skills and started two small businesses, Campus Video, a discount video enterprise at a time when few people owned a VCR, and an exterior painting company which employed a dozen students. Following graduation, Matt went to work for DEC (Digital Equipment Corporation) as a financial analyst and later transitioned to sales, relocating to Seattle, Washington. It was there that he experienced a life altering event. His appendix burst. Gravely ill, he moved back to Massachusetts to recover. While in recovery, Matt decided to go back to school to become a teacher.
“I enrolled in a one year intensive program at Lesley College while working nights at UPS part-time. In the fall of 1993, I began my teaching career at St. Anthony’s School in Fitchburg.”
A year later, when a social studies position opened at Quabbin Regional Middle School, Matt applied. Since 1994, he has taught U.S. History, World History, and World Geography and has coached 30 seasons, mostly at the varsity level. Matt has coached league, district, and state champions, and has had athletes qualify for the All New England High School Track and Field Meet and National High School Track and Field Meet.
But Matt never gave up on being an entrepreneur.
In 1994, Matt created the start-up, CrunchTime, a fundraising company that offered a healthier product for schools to sell. Matt and his partner became exclusive brokers for Tropical Source chocolate bars for schools across the country. Tropical Source chocolate bars had no refined sugar and included rain forest ingredients. Schools who sold Tropical Source received a free copy of a Jaguar Trax, a rain forest documentary that Matt co-produced with Interlock Media. Jaguar Trax features Jeff Corwin, a familiar face on Animal Planet and is still distributed by the The Video Project. For nearly a decade, CrunchTime operated as the only such fundraising company in the country. Eventually, the competition in that industry and shrinking profit margins closed that chapter in Matt’s life.
In 2011, Matt created the Massachusetts Middle School Track and Field Championship Meet. The meet is sanctioned by USA Track and Field, and is sponsored by Saucony and Marx Running. Last year, over 1000 students from nearly 100 middle schools across the state competed at Fitchburg State University at the 3rd annual event.
“On the way home from the 2010 Massachusetts Middle School Cross-Country meet, I began wondering why no one had created a state meet for middle school track athletes. By the time I reached my driveway, I decided to create the meet myself and spent many hours during those winter months laying the groundwork for the meet.”
Matt has served as a selectman for the Town of Hubbardston where he has worked diligently to ensure the efficient delivery of town services. Two years ago, the board of selectmen created a Town Charter committee to bring forward a new Town Charter after 244 years. This was approved by the voters in November 2012 and it strengthened the town administrator’s position to better coordinate the town’s departments, boards and committees.
As a selectman, Matt led the effort to create a town website back in the early 2000s. Residents are now able to pay their taxes online and locate information and forms for all Town departments. Along with his colleagues on the board of selectmen, Matt has helped prepare 15 balanced budgets. He has helped Hubbardston enter several regional agreements. He has supported: the creation of a Town ambulance service; the preservation of open space; and the upgrading of Hubbardston’s recreational facilities upgrades for all ages.
“It would be an honor to serve you as a State Representative. In these challenging fiscal times, I pledge to serve with the same level of commitment that Senator Brewer and Representative Gobi have demonstrated over the years.” - Matt Castriotta