In Praise of Tom McGonigle

Filed in National by on November 15, 2012

I see that Tom McGonigle, Gov. Jack Markell’s Chief of Staff, is stepping down from public service to return to private practice.

Just for the record, Tom McGonigle is one of the finest public servants I’ve ever come across. A real straight-shooter, skilled at bringing people together, smart (but never in that ‘let me show you how smart I am’  way), very serious, and compassionate. And, did I mention self-effacing? Be honest, how many of you even knew that he was Jack’s chief-of-staff?

Tom has played a key role in developing legislative consensus for Gov. Markell’s agenda. People on both sides of the aisle trust him. Plus, have you noticed how there hasn’t been even a hint of scandal when it comes to the operations of the Markell administration, a far cry from the Minner years?

I first met Tom while working on nursing home reform with Sen. Bob Marshall. Tom had just become then-Gov. Carper’s top lawyer. We had been getting nowhere fast trying to garner the support of DHSS Secretary Gregg Sylvester at the time. Tom jumped in and helped craft and get enacted some of the most progressive legislation in the country on that issue, legislation that helped protect some of Delaware’s most vulnerable citizens.

Tom has continued his great works with Gov. Markell.  McGonigle’s scathing critique of DELDOT puts to shame anything that the State Auditor has ever produced during his decades in office, and has led to true reform. And this is but a mere snapshot of all that he’s done.

Tom: I hope that you make more money than you’ll ever need in private practice and that you then return to public service as a judge, at the very least. Thank you for all that you have done for this state. You have made Delaware a better place, a signature legacy indeed.


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  1. Linda says:

    Congrats Mike Barlow!!! I always thought you would be perfect for political office . . . LOL . . . maybe a little press might be a good catalyst – – just sayn : )

  2. anon says:

    Tom is a stand up guy and he will be missed.