When I headed FEMA, I could always rely on Kevin for appropriate counsel and support. As two former fire fighters, we knew what needed to be done for those impacted by disasters and for the men and women responding in harm’s way. From increasing grant funding for SAFER and AFG to improving USAR response capabilities to working on communications, wild land, EMS and other response issues, we partnered to improve the fire service and the federal government’s preparedness and response to any and all disasters.
While Kevin and I may differ on our partisan politics, our work as advocates for public safety was always bi-partisan. Our success allocating broadband spectrum for our first responders is one of my proudest victorys and we surprised a lot of folks working so well together….
Kevin has been a trusted friend and confidante for over 20 years. His service and insight on the board while we were growing First Mariner Bank was invaluable. In recent years, he’s helped me expand indoor soccer and boost the Baltimore Blast, the sport’s oldest and most successful franchise. Our trip to Israel to bolster economic development in Maryland was like no other. We were a great cheerleading and promotional team—me the CEO business guy and Kevin the union thug. But, it worked!
Kevin O’Connor is a brilliant strategist how understands how to find principled as well as practical solutions amongst diverse interests. He is thoughtful, patient and creative while remaining laser focused. His relationships and knowledge are broad and deep which makes him one of the rare few who is recognized as an honest broker and true problem solver.
You have traveled a long and successful path since our early days in the Maryland General Assembly. You have always been able to get things done. Kendel and I could not be more excited for this new chapter in your career. We know you will enjoy great success.
Kevin’s counsel and advocacy assisted me greatly in drafting and actually passing the HELPS Act in 2005 to provide retirement fire fighters and police officers with a tax break to purchase health care. It was a proud moment when the bill was signed into law. Both politically and lobbying, Kevin’s approach is being honest, keeping his word and standing by his friends.
Kevin has been a tremendous asset to our corporate board. He provides both tremendous insight and has a keen awareness of how public policy, regulation and legislation impacts the delivery of health care and the bottom line of our enterprise
I have known Kevin since we served together on the DNC Platform Drafting Committee in 2004 and we worked closely together while I was Secretary of Labor. Kevin is a committed and passionate advocate for working people and the labor movement. As he takes these next steps in life, I know he will continue to fight for our values.
I’ve known Kevin O’Connor for over 35 years. His understanding of firefighting, emergency management, labor/management relations, and the latest emerging trends and technologies for First-Responders is second to none.
You have been a good friend for a long time and we have been through a lot. You have served your members well and really helped move a lot of important pieces of legislation helping the fire service and labor. Your work really has made a difference in people’s lives, not just for the firefighter, but for their families and communities. Enjoy the days ahead and I look forward to seeing you soon.