By Amanda Beland – January 30, 2013

Governor Deval Patrick has made it official.  William Cowan will be the new Massachusetts senator, at least for a few month.

Today Patrick appointed his former Chief of Staff to fill John Kerry’s seat. The Commonwealth’s Senior Senator resigned from the Senate this week after being confirmed as the nation’s new Secretary of State. He was approved in a 94-3 vote. Ed_Markey_and_Mo_Cowan_at_John_Kerry_farewell_-_2013

Cowan will be the first African American to represent Massachusetts in the Senate since 1978.  Edward Brooke was the first.  Three years ago Cowan became Patrick’s Chief of Staff.  He resigned last November.  Cowan was raised in North Carolina, is married, and has two young children.

Cowan will hold the seat until a special election on June 25. A primary election is slated for April 30. So far, Congressman Edward Markey is the only high profile Democrat to announce he will run for the seat. tomorrow Congressman Stephen  Lynch is expected to announce whether he will run.

Former Senator Scott Brown is also considering running for the seat, but has made no indication as if and when a formal decision will be announced. The Republican lost his seat in November to Democratic challenger Elizabeth Warren.  She now becomes the Bay State’s Senior Senator.  Two years ago Brown had won a special election for Ted Kennedy’s seat.  The Democrat had died in office from brain cancer.