Marissa Elkins (she/her/hers) is a public school parent, defense attorney, and dedicated progressive.
As City Councilor At-Large, Marissa serves on the Council's Legislative Matters and Community Resources Committees. She is also the Council's appointee to the Northampton Energy and Sustainability Commission and the Commission to Study Racialized Harm.
Marissa is managing partner at the Northampton firm of Elkins, Auer, Rudof & Schiff and works in courts throughout Western Massachusetts. Marissa has dedicated her career to equity, beginning her legal career as a public defender and continuing to devote the majority of her practice to representing people accused of crimes who can’t afford an attorney.
Marissa has taken on many service and leadership roles in the legal community. She is president of the Hampshire County Bar Advocate Board of Directors, which oversees the panel of attorneys appointed to represent accused persons who can’t afford an attorney. Marissa is a past president of the Hampshire County Bar Association and served on the boards of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and also served on the Supreme Judicial Court’s Standing Committee on Pro Bono Legal Services.
In Northampton, prior to being elected to City Council, Marissa served on the city Planning Board from 2019 until she was sworn into Council in 2021. In 2020, Marissa co-chaired the Yes!Northampton committee that successfully campaigned to pass the Prop 2 1/2 Override to ensure Northampton can continue fund its priorities while maintaining long-term financial stability.
Marissa and her wife, Tara, moved to New England from Texas in 2002 for law school and Tara’s medical residency training. They found themselves drawn to Northampton’s welcoming community and charming downtown and moved to town in 2004. They’ve been proud and active members of the community ever since and now are raising a true Massachusetts kid who attends JFK Middle School, plays hockey and saxophone and loves her good dog, Sophie.