Koch, Edward I.

Koch, Edward I. (Irving)

(1924–  ) mayor; born in New York City. He interrupted college to serve in the U.S. Army from 1943 to 1946, winning two Battle Stars. In practice as a lawyer beginning in 1949, he was a member of the New York City Council (1967–8), then served in the U.S. House of Representatives (1969–74). He served as Democratic mayor of New York from 1978–90; his reelection in 1981 was partly due to his success in handling New York's financial problems and saving the city from bankruptcy. In 1982 he lost a bid for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination to Mario Cuomo. Defeated as Democratic candidate for mayor in 1989 by David Dinkins, he returned to practice law with Robinson, Silverman, Pearce, Aronsohn & Bowman. A colorful and outspoken character, he also found a place in the news media as a TV talk show host and newspaper columnist. His books include His Eminence and Hizzoner (with John Cardinal O'Connor, 1989) and All the Best, Letters from a Feisty Mayor (1990).
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.