Incumbent Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz’s current Second Suffolk Senate District challenger couldn’t be more different than her last opponent. Snatching the seat from Dianne Wilkerson, who will be sentenced later this year for accepting bribes, Chang-Diaz faces Hassan Williams in today’s primary.

 

Homeless during his 20s, Williams eventually graduated from Boston College Law School and has taught in Boston Public Schools the last 10 years.

 

“We have a low incumbent challenger rate,” Chang-Diaz said. “Does it push me to work harder and get back on the campaign trail, sure, but I think it’s good for democracy.”

 

Williams’ story has gained traction in the district, which spans from Beacon Hill to Mattapan and includes parts of the South End, Jamaica Plain, Fenway, Roxbury, Dorchester, and Chinatown.

 

“When people think about their struggles they see those in my struggles,” Williams said. “I came through those same struggles.”