Marie McCourt for 2nd Hampshire District

Marching Forward, Making History


Winfred F. Forward, the only State Representative in history to hail from Granby, MA

During the Great Depression, Winfred F. Forward, a farmer from the tiny town of Granby on the west-side of Massachusetts, was looking for opportunity and a job. In 1931 jobs were in short supply, but the Granby resident and selectman had landed himself a great job: state representative. Once on Beacon Hill, Forward would bring forth legislation with his fellow farmers in mind. He brought forward bills on the regulation of the slaughter of cows with tuberculosis as well as legislation regulating the production of milk and cream. Forward left the state house in 1934. He was the only state representative ever to hail from Granby.

            Marie McCourt, a local Democratic and community activist, hopes to change that. Forward was a Republican, but McCourt sees some similarities with Granby’s first state representative. “Win Forward was a farmer. His experience informed his legislative career. Like him, my life experience is the driving force behind my candidacy. I’ve lived some of the ups and downs of the people of the 2nd Hampshire District. I’ve also experienced the good that government can do when there are good people in place.”

            Although she has never been a farmer, McCourt is no stranger to farm work. “When my husband Matt and I were dating, I would join him and his father haying the fields on their farm. I was right out there with them. Throwing bales onto the truck. Driving--and sometimes--fixing the truck. It’s funny what people do for love.”

Although not working the fields of Granby any longer, Marie continues to work hard on its behalf. McCourt is well-known for her hands-on work ethic while eschewing the spotlight.   “It’s really important to understand people from the perspective of their work. What they do says a lot about who they are and what they need.”

            Aside from politics, McCourt and Forward also share experience in fraternal organizations. A long-time member of the Granby Lions Club, McCourt has served as president of the organization. She continues as a member and supervises food safety for their fundraising events. Forward was a Deputy Director of Grand Master of the Masons and a member of The Grange. At one point he traveled across the state to install the master of the Andover Grange.

             “I didn’t grow up with a lot of money. My father died when I was young, my mother raised me alone,” said McCourt. “Living during the Depression, Win Forward must have known incredible hardships. He was the son of French-Canadian immigrants. He began life as a farmer and made it from Granby to Beacon Hill. I’d call that one terrific American dream.” With a grin she added,  “I think we’re due for another shot, don’t you?”







Posted on 01 Jul 2018, 8:24 - Category: campaign

The Campaign Begins

Honorable Ellen Story and Marie McCourt outside the Hadley Meeting House, June 6, 2018
The Honorable Ellen Story and Marie McCourt, Hadley Meeting House, June 6, 2018

The Honorable Ellen Story hosted a campaign kick-off event June 7th on behalf of Granby resident and progressive Democrat Marie McCourt at the Hadley Meeting House. Ms. McCourt is running for State Representative for the 2nd Hampshire District. The same seat previously held by Story and currently held by retiring Representative John Sciback. In attendance at the kick-off were members of the Indivisible movement, local activists, current and former elected officials such as former mayor of Northampton, Claire Higgins.

               Speaking about why she was supporting McCourt in her run, Ms. Story detailed the many years of civic engagement, public school advocacy, and McCourt’s commitment to working for the under-served, the at-risk, and the most vulnerable citizens in the 2nd Hampshire District.  Marie’s dedication to doing the hard work, even while working two and three jobs at a time, has been a hallmark of her work ethic and ability to cut through obstacles to achieve important outcomes on behalf of so many.

               As Marie’s campaign gains momentum, her story and her mission are bringing people together in new and exciting ways. Liz Friedman of Northampton, a local activist and women’s rights advocate, spoke about Marie’s years of advocacy and work on behalf of so many at-risk citizens. Friedman also detailed three key areas the Marie McCourt for State Representative campaign needs support: volunteers, donors, and getting out the vote.

               In a spontaneous but powerful moment, a local resident shared with those in attendance how he had recently reached out to Marie for an issue regarding infringement on his civil rights. The speaker shared that even though they didn’t know one another and Marie isn’t elected, she immediately got to work and helped find a positive solution. 


Posted on 11 Jun 2018, 7:15 - Category: Events

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