Tara Jacobs of North Adams wins Governor’s Council primary in stunning upset over Springfield City Councilor Michael Fenton


North Adams School Committee member Tara Jacobs pulled off a surprise win over Springfield City Councilor Michael Fenton to become the Democratic choice for the Western Massachusetts seat on the Governor’s Council.

She will face Republican John Comerford in the November election.

Fenton conceded just before noon on Wednesday, with ballots from a few precincts still trickling in. Jacobs was up by a hair under 2,700 votes in the primary election.

It was a stunning upset in a field of four Democrats — three of whom were male attorneys from Hampden County — for the District 8 council seat. The representative will represent Berkshire, Franklin, Hampden and Hampshire counties on the eight-member panel carved up geographically and tasked with vetting and confirming judicial nominees by the governor.

Jacobs, a community activist who is not a lawyer, said she was optimistic throughout the campaign despite starting behind in the fundraising and name recognition fronts.

“I worked so hard because I knew I was the underdog out of the gate,” Jacobs said. “I had a lot of hope and no expectations.”

Jacobs captured 27,328 votes over Fenton’s 24,725 with 96% of precincts in the four western counties reporting. Agawam attorney Shawn P. Allyn won 16,986 votes and Morneau trailed with 13,787.


This story was originally published on MassLive.com on September 7, 2022: https://www.masslive.com/news/2022/09/tara-jacobs-of-north-adams-wins-governors-council-primary-in-stunning-upset-over-springfield-city-councilor-michael-fenton.html