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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Governor's Council First District

The Massachusetts Governor's Council, also known as the Executive Council, is composed of eight individuals elected from districts, plus the Lieutenant Governor who serves ex officio. The eight councillors are elected from their districts every two years. The Council meets weekly to record advice and consent on warrants for the state treasury, pardons and commutations, and recording advice and consent to gubernatorial appointments such as judges, clerk-magistrates, public administrators, members of the Parole Board, Appellate Tax Board, Industrial Accident Board and Industrial Accident Reviewing Board, notaries, and justices of the peace. Base salary is $36,025.

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  • Joseph C. Ferreira
    (Dem)

Biographical Information

State your relevant background and qualifications, particularly as they relate to the judicial nominating process.

How would you respond to someone who says that the Governor's Council is outdated? Why is this body still essential in the Commonwealth?

What is important to you when evaluating candidates for the parole board?

What would you do to improve diversity on the courts?

Are changes needed in the way the Governor’s Council approves candidates?

I am a proud dad of three daughters, Katelyn who earned her Masters in public health and works at Mt. Sinai in NY, Julie who is in nursing school and Danielle who is studying psychology and nutrition. I spent 30 years in law enforcement (9 as Chief of Police) in Somerset. I attended Law School while I was a patrolman and then served as a Law Clerk to the Superior Court in Massachusetts. For The past 28 years I have been an Attorney at Lynch & Lynch. I have volunteered extensively.
The Governor’s Council is part of the check and balance system in our State constitution. It gives voters the right to elect 8 people every two years who focus on judicial appointments as well as the selection and appointment of notary publics, justices of the peace, the tax board of appeals, the parole boards and consideration of pardons
Nominees should have real life experience with our criminal justice system. They should be able to make informed decisions regarding rehabilitation, recidivism, and the potential for prisoners to be good citizens upon release. A background in forensic psychology or similar field would be preferable.
The same thing I have been doing since i was elected. I have been the speaker at many events where I recruit women and diverse candidates to apply. I have also held seminars on how to become a judge and encourage Minorities to come and apply! A few of the people who have come to the seminars and who were encouraged are now judges, including several women and diverse candidates.
I personally talk with each candidate extensively before each vote. I believe Councillors all do a good job in the vetting process.