Peter Clavelle's first run for public office was in 1989 when he won election as mayor of Burlington as a Progressive. He won re-election two years later but was defeated in a bid for a third term in 1993 by a Republican city councilman.
Clavelle spent the intervening two years setting up a consulting firm that specialized in community development. He ran for his old job again in 1995 and defeated the Republican who had beaten him two years earlier.
Clavelle has been re-elected four times since then and is the city's longest-serving mayor. He switched political affiliations to the Democratic Party for his last re-election campaign and is running for governor as a Democrat.