Tom Kovach
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Tom Kovach
Tom Kovach
Tom Kovach.jpg
President of the New Castle County Council

January 2011
Paul Clark
Member of the Delaware House of Representatives
from the 6th district

January 2009 - January 2011
Diana McWilliams
Debra Heffernan
Personal details
Thomas H. Kovach

(1969-05-27) May 27, 1969 (age 50)
Woodbury, New Jersey, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
Alma materUniversity of Delaware, Newark
Rutgers University, Camden

Thomas H. "Tom" Kovach (born May 27, 1969), is a Delaware attorney and politician who is the New Castle County Council President.[1] A Republican, he ran for the United States House of Representatives seat for Delaware's At-large congressional district in 2012, and lost to incumbent John Carney

Early life

Kovach was born in Woodbury, New Jersey, but grew up in northern Delaware, where he became an Eagle Scout. He earned undergraduate degrees in chemical engineering and psychology from the University of Delaware in 1992 and went to work for the Environmental Protection Agency as an enforcement officer before receiving a law degree from Rutgers University five years later. He then went on to practice environmental law and commercial litigation, at one time chairing these positions in the Delaware State Bar Association.[1]

Public service

State representative

Immediately after the 2008 elections, Democrat Dianna Williams announced that she would be resigning her office. Governor Ruth Ann Minner announced a special election five days before Christmas to fill the seat.[2] Kovach won an upset victory and came into office with the 2008 class. He sat on the Education, Energy and Veterans Affairs Committees, among others. He sponsored legislation to make state government more transparent and also tried to move school board elections to coincide with general elections in order to save money and increase voter participation.[3][4] He lost reelection during the 2010 election by 400 votes.[5]

New Castle County President

Following the election of New Castle County Executive Chris Coons to the U.S. Senate, New Castle County President Paul Clark was elevated to fill the remainder of his term. This left a vacancy in the office of the presidency, and a special election was called for January 2011.[6] Kovach was chosen as the Republican candidate for this position, running against county councilman Tim Sheldon, a Democrat. He won the election with 57% of the vote, making him the first member of his party to win this office in 23 years. As president, Kovach has worked to promote transparency and decrease the size of county government.[7] During a State of the County address by New Castle County Executive Paul Clark in 2012, Kovach suggested more work be done to reduce the costs of county services.[8]

United States House of Representatives campaign

In October 2011 Kovach announced that he would run for U.S. Congress. He faced Rose Izzo in the Republican primary. Kovach defeated Izzo in the primary and faced Democratic freshman Representative John Carney[9] During a debate with Carney, Kovach criticized government regulations as harming jobs, saying, "Government needs to get out of the way." He opposed the Affordable Care Act (commonly called Obamacare) and criticized stimulus packages as failing to "address the fundamental problems" with the economy. He also supported a better energy policy and spending less overseas as means of bringing down budget deficits.[10] He went on to lose the election to Carney, receiving 33% of the vote.[5]

Election results

Election results
Year Office Election Subject Party Votes % Opponent Party Votes %
2008 State House 6th District Special Tom Kovach Republican 1,540 51.2% Michael Migliore Democrat 1,467 48.8%
2010 State House 6th District General Tom Kovach Republican 3,856 46.9% Debra Heffernan Democrat 4,263 51.9%
2011 New Castle County President Special Tom Kovach Republican 16,721 57.5% Tim Sheldon Democrat 12,139 41.7%
2012 Congress, Delaware At-large Primary Tom Kovach Republican 15,018 65.6% Rose Izzo Republican 7,888 34.4%
2012 Congress, Delaware At-large General Tom Kovach Republican 129,749 33% John C. Carney, Jr. Democrat 249,905 64%

Personal life

Kovach has three children. Kovach has also served as an assistant scoutmaster, and coaches youth soccer, and serves on the Board of Goodwill and the Boy Scouts.[1]


  1. ^ a b c "Thomas H. Kovach". The Washington Times. Archived from the original on 30 June 2013. Retrieved 2013.
  2. ^ "GOP names Tom Kovach to run in Special Election". Hockessin Community News. 25 November 2008. Retrieved 2013.
  3. ^ "Biography for State Rep. Tom Kovach". Delaware State House of Representatives: Minority Caucus. Retrieved 2013.
  4. ^ "HB 117 - School Board Elections - Key Vote". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved 2013.
  5. ^ a b Department of Elections (5 November 2010). "State of Delaware: General Election". State of Delaware (official website). Retrieved 2013.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ Fowser, Mark (13 January 2011). "Polls open for New Castle County special election". newsworks. Archived from the original on 4 July 2013. Retrieved 2013.
  7. ^ Matalch/Gerace (January 13, 2011). "Kovach easily wins County Council President's race". WDEL 1150 AM. Archived from the original on October 23, 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  8. ^ Fowser, Mark (January 10, 2012). "NCCo Executive Clark says county on "firm financial footing" in State of the County address". Delaware Public Media. Archived from the original on December 22, 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  9. ^ "Open seat makes NH governor's race most watched; Rhode Island, Delaware also hold primaries". Associated Press. Associated Press. 11 September 2012. Retrieved 2013.
  10. ^ Mace, Ben (October 16, 2012). "Citizens protest; Pires calls Carper corrupt, unfit at Delaware debates". The Dover Post. Dover, DE. Retrieved 2014.

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