U.S. Senator William "Mo" Cowan was sworn into office a few minutes after 12 p.m. on Thursday by Vice President Joe Biden on the floor of the Senate.
Cowan, a Stoughton resident, was appointed last week to be interim Senator by Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick. Cowan is taking the place of former Massachusetts Senator John Kerry, who became Secretary of State - serving until a new senator is elected in the June 25 special election.
Cowan was the former Chief of Staff for Governor Patrick, before accepting this interim Senate appointment. Prior to his role as Chief of Staff, he also served as chief legal counsel to Governor Patrick, having served in the Patrick-Murray Administration since 2009.
Newly elected Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren and now Secretary of State Kerry ushered Cowan, also a Democrat, to the rostrum where he was sworn in. Warren and Kerry stood by Cowan as he took the oath of office (click here to watch the swearing-in on C-SPAN).
"I am deeply honored and humbled to have the opportunity to serve the people of Massachusetts as a United States Senator. I want to thank Governor Patrick for the faith he showed in me by appointing me to this position,” Senator Cowan said in a statement following is swearing-in ceremony.
“Even though I will be in the Senate for a short time, I will use that time to do my best, working alongside Senator Warren, to continue the work that Secretary Kerry started and uphold the traditions that he and the late Senator Ted Kennedy established in serving the commonwealth. To me, there is nothing more important than maintaining focus on how we can work together in the Senate, the House and on Beacon Hill to fulfill the needs of the people of Massachusetts and to move forward with the important goals that President Barack Obama has set our sights upon.”
A graduate of Duke University and Northeastern University School of Law, Cowan was a partner at Mintz Levin in Boston before joining the Patrick administration.
He lives in Stoughton on Connie Lane with his wife, Stacy, and their two young sons, 8-year-old Miles and 4-year-old Grant. His wife and two sons were also in attendance at Thursday's swearing in.
Cowan's stay in Washington will be a brief one - he ruled out running for public office at anytime in the future during his introductory press conference Jan. 30.
He is just the second black senator from Massachusetts, and joins Tim Scott, a South Carolina Republican, as the only black senators currently in the U.S. Senate.