HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – Alex Morse has announced he will resign as Mayor of Holyoke next week.
In a letter addressed to the City Clerk’s Office Monday, Morse said he intends to resign from the position, effective March 26, at 4:30 p.m.
Morse has been Mayor of Holyoke for 10 years and is the youngest to be elected into that position at age 22 since 2012.
He will go on to officially begin his new role as Town Manager of Provincetown on Cape Cod on April 5. The Holyoke mayor was unanimously approved by the Selectboard of Provincetown in late February. He was among three finalists being considered for the position.
Provincetown is at the northern tip of Cape Cod, and because of its small population, the select board appoints a Town Manager to lead the town.
In his letter to the city clerk, Morse, who ran against Congressman Richard Neal in the 2020 elections, said he will no doubt bring with him the lessons he learned leading Holyoke these last 10 years. He announced back in December that he will not seek re-election.
His full letter addressed to City Clerk Todd McGee is below:
When I reflect on the past decade, I’m proud of what we’ve been able to achieve. I think of the neighborhoods that have seen record levels of new investment, the parks we’ve renovated and the new parks we’ve built, and the new housing completed and in progress. I think of the Holyokers from all different backgrounds and walks of life who got involved in the civic life of our community for the first time.
Today, buildings that were once vacant are home to restaurants, housing, and artist spaces. Our population is growing again, and so is our tax base. We’ve empowered local entrepreneurs to create their own businesses. We’ve improved educational outcomes for our students and we’ve made the city safer than it’s been at any time in a generation.
We fought to open a needle-exchange program, reducing overdose deaths and the spread of disease. We reduced our carbon footprint and closed the state’s last remaining coal plant. We welcomed the burgeoning cannabis industry, boosting the local economy and taking a stand against the war on drugs. In the face of federal pressure, we maintained our status as a sanctuary city, and made our whole community safer as a result.
But what I’m most proud of is the spirit of community we’ve nurtured – the way we’ve opened doors to people and communities that long felt shut out and left behind. We built a government that reflected and represented everyone, and not only those who traditionally had access.
For ten years, we’ve worked together – not always agreeing, but ultimately finding ways to lift the city up and move us forward. And I am so deeply honored that the people of Holyoke voted to send me back to Room One time and time again, allowing me – at the young age of 32 – to leave office as the 4th longest-serving mayor in our city’s history.
In important respects, the city’s next mayor will govern a city that is stronger – more prosperous, more decent, more just – than it was ten years ago. But challenges do lie ahead. And while I will no longer be mayor, I stand ready to assist in the transition as well as when I officially leave office. I will forever be invested in our city’s success, regardless of who occupies the Mayor’s Office. I have full faith in Council President Todd McGee, who will become Acting Mayor upon my resignation, and I thank him for his willingness to embrace this role at a critical time in our city’s history. I also want to extend my appreciation to the dedicated public servants at City Hall, along with the elected members of the City Council and School Committee that I have worked alongside.
I want to end by thanking the most important people in my life, my family, who without, I would have never had this opportunity. My parents – two kids who grew up in our city’s public housing projects – never imagined that their son would one day be their city’s mayor. And they have helped me realize, as special as the title of mayor has been, that the most important and meaningful title I will ever hold is being a son, a brother, an uncle, and a friend.
Thank you for the honor of a lifetime,Alex B. Morse, Mayor