Senator Samuel D. Zurier
Samuel Zurier, a former member of the Providence City Council, was elected to represent Senate District 3 in Providence in November 2021.
Zurier grew up in Providence’s East Side and graduated from Classical High School. He went on to study at Yale University, Oxford University (as a Rhodes Scholar) and Yale Law School.
An attorney in private practice, Zurier specializes in civil litigation. Between 1986 and 1988, he clerked for U.S. District Court Judge Rya Zobel and future U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, then a member of the First Circuit Court of Appeals, in Boston. He went on to serve as Assistant Attorney General in the Environmental Protection Division of the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office. He has also taught education law as an adjunct professor at Roger Williams Law School.
Education has been a central focus of Zurier’s public service and community involvement. He served as a member of the Providence School Board from 2000 to 2002 and co-founded the Classical High School Alumni Association, which raises private funding to support the school. In 2006, he and other East Side parents formed the East Side Public Education Coalition, or ESPEC, to advocate against the planned closure of Nathan Bishop Middle School. He was also a member of the Steering Committee for Rhode Island is Ready, a grassroots group that supported the state’s adoption of an educational fair funding formula.
Zurier was first elected to the Providence City Council as its Ward 2 representative in 2010. He won reelection in 2014. While on the council, he continued his focus on educational issues, as well as the city’s finances.
He has also worked with a number of community organizations. He has been a board member for Jewish Family Service, the Jewish Federation of Rhode Island and Temple Beth El. Additionally, he served for several years as the chair of the Rhodes Scholarship Trust’s Rhode Island selection committee.
Zurier and his wife, Lauren, have lived on the East Side of Providence since 1990. They have three children, Rachel, Hannah and Joseph.