The only black woman in the Massachusetts House of Representatives is retiring at the end of this year, leaving a big hole not just for her Roxbury-based district, but the chamber as a whole. And just as Rep. Gloria Fox hoped for, a trio of black women are vying to replace her.

Most of the candidates' positions expressed at a Dudley Square forum Tuesday night were very similar, so experience and attitude is playing a big role in swaying votes in the Roxbury, Fenway and Longwood neighborhoods of the Seventh Suffolk District.

"I already know the issues, I already know the budget needs, I already know what the development problems are, so I want to do that, I want to be that voice for them and be that positive impact for the district," said Mary-dith Tuitt, a Navy veteran and Fox's aide for 16 years.

Monica Cannon, a youth worker and community liaison, has brought more of an outsider's fight to the race.

"I am in this district, I am not leaving this district. I will continuously fight for this district," Cannon told the crowd of more than 100 gathered at the Twelfth Baptist Church in Dudley Square. "And it doesn't take for me to have a legislative seat, but the legislative seat will give me a seat at the table to be able to advocate for the people who live here, and and I will continue to do that, win, lose, or draw."

Roxbury native Chynah Tyler, a former aide to Sen. Sonia Chang Diaz, differs from Tuitt and Cannon by supporting the ballot question to allow more charter schools.

"There are parents that have children in all types of school systems," Tyler said. "To bridge the gap and create quality options across the board, that's huge for me."

Voters who go to the polls Thursday, September 8, will likely pick the new representative since there is little to no opposition to the eventual Democratic candidate.