Former Sheriff Seeking County Treasurer Seat


A former sheriff of Norfolk County has entered the race for county treasurer and will face a member of the Quincy City Council in a Democratic primary election in September.

Michael Bellotti

Michael Bellotti, who was the sheriff of Norfolk County from 1999 until late 2018, has qualified for the September ballot, according to the secretary of state’s office. A Squantum resident, Bellotti served six years in the state House of Representatives prior to becoming sheriff. He resigned from the sheriff’s job to become interim president of Quincy College, a job he left in November.

Bellotti could not be reached for comment Thursday morning.

His opponent in the Democratic primary will be Ward 2 Councillor Brad Croall, who has also qualified for the ballot. Croall, a Penn’s Hill resident, has served on the Quincy City Council since 2012. He was the council president in 2018 and 2019.

The incumbent treasurer, James Timilty, is not running this year. No Republican candidates are seeking the position.

This fall’s ballot will also include a special election to fill the remainder of Bellotti’s term as sheriff, plus contests for register of probate and county commissioner.

All four candidates who entered the special election for sheriff have qualified the ballot.

Those include Jerry McDermott, a Westwood Republican who Gov. Charlie Baker named sheriff following Bellotti’s resignation.

Three Democrats have qualified for the race as well and will face off in September. They are James Coughlin, a retired State Police detective from Dedham; Patrick McDermott of Quincy, the county’s register of probate; and former Quincy mayor William Phelan.

Five candidates, all Democrats, have qualified for the ballot in the race to replace Patrick McDermott as register of probate. They are: Colleen Brierley, a Norwood attorney; Noel DiBona, a Quincy city councillor; Kathryn Hubley, a member of the Quincy School Committee; Courtney Madden, a Quincy attorney; and Michael Walsh, a Westwood selectman.

Two candidates have qualified for the ballot in the race for county commissioner.

They are incumbent Joseph Shea, a Quincy Democrat and former city clerk, and Brookline Selectwoman Heather Hamilton, an unenrolled candidate.

Braintree Town Councillor Charles Ryan, a Democrat, has collected enough signatures to appear on the ballot but still has to file a receipt from the State Ethics Commission confirming that he has filed his statement of financial interest before he can be officially on the ballot, according to the secretary of state’s office. Two other Democrats, Dedham Selectman Dennis Guilfoyle and Canton attorney Richard R. Staiti of have yet to file.

Candidates have until June 2 to file with the secretary of state’s office.

Norwood Atty. Colleen Brierley Candidate For Norfolk Register Of Probate

Attorney Colleen Brierley of Norwood announces her candidacy for Norfolk County Register of Probate and Family Court.

The seat is being vacated by three term Patrick McDermott of Quincy and there are currently five candidates in the race.

Colleen Brierley

Brierley said, ”I am uniquely qualified to be the next Register of Probate because I am the only candidate with over 30 years of experience working for children and families before the Probate and the Juvenile Courts of Massachusetts.” A Democrat, Brierley is seeking the Democratic nomination for Norfolk Register of Probate in this fall’s state election.

Brierley said she learned early on in her career that the courts play a powerful role in people’s lives.

Brierley said, “As a probation aide, social worker, youth advocate and now as an attorney, I have zealously and compassionately helped people navigate the court system to find solutions.”

Brierley said, “I know that the Register of Probate can make a positive impact and that is why I’m in this race. Programs aimed at support and connections to treatment are one of my top priorities. Other programs that I will champion as Register of Probate are the Lawyer of the Day Program, the Attorneys Representing Children Program (ARC) and Domestic Violence Ended (DOVE). The next Register needs to be someone who understands how the courts work and that life circumstances can bring all of us to the court.”

“The Probate and Family Court touches all of our lives during times of change, crisis, uncertainty and joy. The court hears cases ranging from change of a name, divorce, probate of an estate, guardianship, conservatorship, and adoption.” Brierley said. “The Probate Court truly is the people’s court and the Register of Probate is an elected position within that courthouse.”

“During times of change, whether they be devastating or joyful, leadership within the court is necessary to reduce delay and anxiety. I believe that the Register of Probate works directly for the people within the 28 cities and towns that make up Norfolk County. My experience makes me the best candidate for this leadership role.”

For the past 22 years, Colleen Brierley has operated her private law practice in Norwood. Brierley is also co-founder and manager of the nonprofit, Journey to Parenthood. Journey to Parenthood assists people across the country with the high costs of adoption and fertility treatments.

Of great importance to Brierley is the impact of addiction and the opioid crisis on families.

“Through my work in the courts, I have seen how this insidious drug affects families. I have also felt the heartache within my own family.” Brierley’s oldest brother battled a heroin addiction before passing away in 2015.

Colleen and her husband Bob met at Norwood High School and all five of their children attended and continue to attend the Norwood Public Schools. Brierley and her husband, who first became parents in the 1990s, have adopted three children through the Massachusetts foster care system.