[Los Angeles Times]

WASHINGTON — Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick has named his former chief of staff to temporarily fill the Senate seat being vacated by John Kerry, and called a special election for June 25 for voters to choose a permanent replacement for the incoming secretary of State.

Patrick, a Democrat, chose William “Mo” Cowan, who also served as his chief legal counsel, over two more familiar names in Bay State politics: former Rep. Barney Frank, who had actively lobbied for the appointment, and Victoria Kennedy, the widow of the late Sen. Edward Kennedy.

Cowan will briefly be the Senate’s second African American member, joining another appointee, Republican Tim Scott of South Carolina. He’ll also be the second-ever African American senator from Massachusetts, after Republican Edward Brooke.