About Bruce

Working for a state that educates our children, cares for our elders, and provides a safe, healthy and prosperous community for all of us. State Senator Bruce Tarr, a Republican from Gloucester, is the Senate Minority Leader and proudly represents The First Essex and Middlesex District.

Senator Tarr has been a member of the Massachusetts General Court since 1991, when he won election to the House of Representatives on behalf of the 5th Essex District (which included Gloucester, Rockport and Manchester). In 1994, Bruce was elected to the Massachusetts State Senate, succeeding Senator Robert Buell, who had served for 16 years.

Having graduated from Gloucester High School in 1982, the Senator earned a degree in Business Administration from Suffolk University’s Sawyer School of Management in 1987 and a Juris Doctor from Suffolk University Law School in 1990. In addition, he holds an honorary degree in Applied Science from Essex Agricultural and Technical Institute.

In 1999, he was named the Assistant Minority Whip of the Senate, and in 2001, he was appointed to serve as the Minority Whip until 2006 when he was selected to become Assistant Senate Minority Leader. The Senate Republican Caucus elected him Minority Leader in 2011, a position he continues to hold.

Widely regarded for his knowledge and ability to understand and develop policy, Senator Tarr was a major architect in the successful passage of the state’s stem cell research law, Melanie’s Law, which creates tougher drunk driving penalties for repeat offenders, and numerous bills involving alternative energy and fuels. Since Bruce first entered office he has remained an unyielding advocate for the fishing industry, and has worked tirelessly to bring about fair regulations to govern the Commonwealth’s fishing fleet. He has been heralded for his ability to reach not only across the aisle but also for his ability to work with Massachusetts’ Congressional delegation and federal regulators.

While he considers public policy important and has numerous achievements in this area, the one job that he regards above all else is helping the constituents of his district on a day-to-day basis. Bruce and his staff make it a top priority to help anyone who contacts the office seeking help in any way. Through the years the office has continued to deal with both simple and very complex issues, and in doing so, have generated the skill set, the contacts, and the ability to navigate state and federal government agencies and to interact with public and private organizations to achieve positive results.

Senator Tarr in Our Communities

A member of a variety of committees and organizations:
  • North Shore Water Resiliency Task Force
  • Great Marsh Revitalization Task Force (Co-Chair) Dedicated to the restoration, protection, and strengthening of the Great Marsh, which extends from Cape Ann to the New Hampshire Border
  • Northeast Coastal Coalition (Chair) Mission to promote the resilience and sustainability of coastal communities from Cape Ann to Salisbury, and includes members that are municipal officials, state and federal legislators, state and federal regulators, citizens, and non-governmental organizations
  • Gloucester Rotary Club
  • Merrimack River Beach Alliance (Co-Chair, 2008 to present)
  • Northeast Seafood Coalition Board of Directors, Ex Officio, 2002 to present)
  • Hellenic Bar Association (Board Member, 1997-present)
  • United States Coast Guard Auxiliary (1996-present)
  • Cape Ann Savings Bank-Corporator (1994-present)
  • Friends of the Gloucester Council on Aging (1993-present)
  • Cape Ann Amateur Radio Association (Member)
  • Gloucester Adventure, Incorporated, Ex Officio (Board of Directors, 1991-present)
  • Rowley Grange (Member)
  • Major, Civil Air Patrol, US Air Force Auxiliary

Senator Tarr has been named Legislator of the Year by the following organizations:

  • Dog People, 2016
  • New England Police Benevolent (NEPBA Executive Committee and NEPBA Massachusetts Legislative Committee), 2016
  • American Bluefin Tuna Association, 2015
  • Cape Ann TV, 2015
  • Children’s League of Massachusetts, 2011
  • Massachusetts Systems Contractors Association, 2006
  • The Massachusetts Silver Hair Legislature, 2004
  • Cape Cod Cranberry Grower’s Association, 2002
  • Essex County Bar Association, 2002
  • Massachusetts Association of Business and Professional Women, 1998
  • Massachusetts Boating and Yacht Club Association,1998
  • Massachusetts Municipal Association, 1996
  • Massachusetts Bar Association, 1994
He has received the following awards and recognitions: 
  • Greater Cape Ann Community Collaborative, Recognition and Gratitude During Covid 19 Pandemic, 2022
  • SeniorCare Inc., Rosemary F. Kerry Community Service Award, 2021
  • Massachusetts Association for Community Action, Community Action Champion, 2020
  • American Red Cross, American Red Cross Award, 2019
  • Beacon of Justice, Beacon of Justice Hall of Fame, 2019
  • Common Cause Massachusetts, Legislative Achievement Award, 2019
  • Police Assisted Addiction Recovery Initiative, PAARI Leadership Award, 2019
  • United States Marine Corp Reserves Toys for Tots, Toys for Tots Certificate of Appreciation, 2019
  • YMCA Legislative Champion Award, 2018
  • Action, Inc. Safe Harbor Celebration, Service and Commitment Award, 2018
  • The Massachusetts Association of Italian American Police Officers, Inc., Designated Grand Knight of The Order of Saint Michael the Archangel, 2018
  • Town of BoxfordOutstanding Legislative Leadership (Energy), 2017
  • The Valley Patriot 1st Amendment Award, 2017
  • Children’s Trust, Valuing Our Children Award, 2016
  • Department of Transitional Assistance, Self-Sufficiency Champion, 2016
  • Police Assisted Addiction Recovery Initiative, PAARI Leadership Award, 2016
  • MA School of Law, Humane-itarain Award, 2016
  • Massachusetts Senior Care Association, The Better Life Award, 2016
  • Blaire House of Tewksbury, Outstanding Service Award, 2016
  • 21st Annual Greek Independence Day Parade, Exceptional Accomplishments, 2015
  • Northeast Clean Energy Council, Clean Energy Champion, 2015
  • The 2015 Massachusetts PACE, Legislative Champion Award, 2015
  • Bridgewater State University MPA Public Service Award, 2011
  • Action Inc., Public Service Advocacy Award, 2009
  • Plum Island Foundation Distinguished Leadership Award, 2009
  • Mass Audubon Legislative Leadership Award, 2008
  • Haverhill Community Television Rookie Producer of the Year, 2006
  • Howe-Manning Student Council, Outstanding Leadership Award, 2006
  • Massachusetts Fishermen’s Partnership Wheelhouse Award, 2006
  • North Of Boston Convention and Visitors Bureau Leadership Award, 2006
  • Consorzio Folaris Award, 2006
  • The Open Door, Cape Ann Food Pantry Certificate of Appreciation, 2006
  • Past President Award – Massachusetts Legislators Association, 2006
  • Buzzards Bay Guardian Award, 2005
  • Gloucester Bar Association, Certificate of Recognition, 2004
  • Equal Justice Coalition, Gratitude for Leadership in Support of Civil Legal Service, 2004
  • Essex National Heritage Commission Certificate of Recognition, 2004
  • Massachusetts Nursery and Landscape Association, Environmental Leadership Award, 2003
  • Neighborhood Legal Services, Merrimack Valley Legal Services and Children’s Law Center of Massachusetts, Pillar of Justice Award, 2003
  • Massachusetts Sportsmen’s Council “Sportsman Senator Award”, 2002
  • Cape Cod Cranberry Growers Association, Legislative Leadership Award, 2002
  • Division of Marine Fisheries Belding Award, 2001
  • Massachusetts Agriculture Day Award, 2001
  • The Hubbart Youth Bowling Program, Certificate of Appreciation, 2000-2001
  • Massachusetts Legislators Association, Distinguished Service Award, 2000
  • Gloucester Lodge of Elks, Distinguished Citizen Award, 2000
  • Community Action Appreciation Award- Action, Inc., 2000
  • Yankee Clipper Council of the Boy Scouts of America Outstanding Citizen Award, 2000
  • Elks Distinguished Citizen Award, 1999
  • Workforce Partnership Award, 1998
  • SeniorCare Inc., Outstanding Public Service to Elders, 1996
  • AMVETS Pilgrim Award, 1996
  • North Shore Technical High School, Senior Class Appreciation, 1996
  • Friends of the Gloucester Council on Aging Legislative Service Award, 1995 
  • Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE), Continued Legislative Support, 1995
  • Greater Lawrence Educational Collaborative, Recognition of Your Commitment to Public Education, 1994
  • Massachusetts Beach Buggy Association’s Legislative Service Award, 1994

Join Our Team

And Make Us Stronger

Donate today and support our efforts

The Bruce Tarr Committee
97 Hesperus Avenue
Gloucester, MA 01930

paid for by the bruce tarr committee