State Rep. Carey to run for Hampshire County Clerk of Courts

State Rep. Daniel Carey, D-Easthampton, has announced his candidacy for the Hampshire County Clerk of Courts.

State Rep. Daniel Carey, D-Easthampton, has announced his candidacy for the Hampshire County Clerk of Courts. gazette file photo

By MADDIE FABIAN

Staff Writer

Published: 01-22-2024 4:59 PM

Modified: 01-23-2024 5:26 PM


NORTHAMPTON — After longtime clerk Harry J. Jekanowski Jr. announced earlier late last week that he would not seek reelection for Hampshire County Clerk of Courts, state Rep. Daniel Carey, D-Easthampton announced his candidacy for the position on Saturday.

“When the opportunity arose with Harry Jekanowski retiring — he’s done such a good job for so long — it just struck me that this job is really right in my wheelhouse with my career in public service and my career in the law,” Carey said. “I used to work in that building, and I’m excited to get back into that courthouse and into that field.”

Prior to his election as state representative for the 2nd Hampshire District, Carey worked at the Northwestern District Attorney’s office full-time beginning in 2013. While attending law school at night, he was a district court administrator; and upon graduating from law school and passing the bar exam, he worked as an assistant district attorney.

During that time frame, he also served on the Easthampton City Council and School Committee.

In 2018, Carey was elected to the state Legislature, where he currently holds the number-two role on the House Committee on Post Audit and Oversight, and serves on the Judiciary Committee, Election Laws Committee, and Environmental and Natural Resources Committee.

“I love being a state rep, but I’m excited about this opportunity,” Carey said. “I see it as an opportunity to really help folks.”

The Clerk of Courts oversees administrative tasks for a court of law, including managing court records, scheduling cases and hiring court personnel, and presiding over minor cases. The clerk is also responsible for administering the oath of office for officials including the district attorney, county sheriff and probate register.

Superior Courts in Massachusetts are where murder cases and all major felony cases are adjudicated. Superior Court also has original jurisdiction over civil actions above $50,000.

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“Folks come into the courthouse a lot of times on their worst day, and it’s an opportunity to administer the law fairly and equally to everyone who comes in,” he added.

Carey said he will formally announce his candidacy at the Hotel Northampton on Feb. 17 at 10 a.m.

“Things are really just beginning for the campaign, but there will be a lot more to say at the event on February 17th,” he said.

Carey said that by announcing his candidacy in February, he hopes to give those interested in running for his state representative seat time to organize and make their cases to voters. The state representative for the 2nd Hampshire District represents Easthampton, Granby, Hadley and South Hadley.

The primary and general elections will take place this September and November respectively – with voting taking place for both state representative and clerk of courts. The next term for clerk of courts begins on Jan. 3, 2025.

“It has been a tremendous privilege for me to serve as state representative,” he said.

Maddie Fabian can be reached at mfabian@gazettenet.com.