William ‘Mo’ Cowan tapped to replace Sen. John Kerry in Senate


William 'Mo' Cowan, speaks to the media after begin named interim U.S. Senator January 30, 2013 at the Statehouse in Boston, Massachusetts. Cowan, a senior advisor to Governor Deval Patrick, will fill the position until a successor can be named for the departing John Kerry, who was recently named Secretary of State.


Darren McCollester

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick has picked his former chief of staff to fill Senator John Kerry's vacated Senate seat.

William "Mo" Cowan, has been selected as an interim Senator to replace Kerry who was confirmed Tuesday as Secretary of State in a 94-3 vote, the Boston Globe said.

Massachusetts voters will decide on June 25 in a special election, who will ultimately succeed Kerry.

Cowan is only the second African-American to represent Massachusetts in the Senate, NBC News reported. Republican Ed Brooke, who served from 1967 to 1978, was the first.

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Cowan will join Republican Tim Scott of South Carolina as one of only two African Americans serving in the Senate. It is the first time there will be two black senators in office at the same time.

The Boston Globe reported “Patrick and Cowan built up a strong friendship over the years, in part, because both men have risen from difficult childhoods to prominence in Boston and in the state. Patrick also served as a mentor to Cowan when both were practicing lawyers.”

“The people of the Commonwealth have benefited from [Cowan's] wisdom and good judgment during his time in our office, and will again in the Senate,” Patrick said in a statement.