Hughes, a professional singer and an attorney, is a former political field director for the Mass. GOP who ran the party's state convention in 2010. She is also a Quincy city councilor.
Hughes ended up being the first to declare, but her emergence did not discourage others. Rachel Kemp, a state committee member from Dorchester, announced her candidacy Thursday, as did David D'Arcangelo, a Malden city councilor, and Dean Cavaretta of Acton, who are running as a team.
On Friday, Richard Green, 42, of Pepperell announced his candidacy. Green, who was elected to the state committee this year, runs an online auto parts business and is a founder of the Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance, which advocates conservative fiscal principles.