Tom Reed, age 40, was elected to represent the 29th Congressional District in a special election on November 2, 2010. He was sworn in as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives to fill the vacant 29th District seat on November 19, 2010. He began his first full two-year term on January 1, 2011 and currently serves as a member of the House Committee on Ways and Means.
Tom is one of 12 children raised by Tom and Betty Barr Reed – both long-term residents of the city of Corning, NY. Tom’s father was a veteran of both World War II and the Korean War. “In our family, the military ethics of honor, integrity and commitment to our nation are not just terms or concepts to be thrown around haphazardly,” Tom says. “They are beliefs to be held sacred and always respected.” Tom’s father died when young Tom was only two years old and his mother raised the youngest six of her children on Social Security and military death benefit checks.
He attended All Saints Academy, Corning East High School and was graduated in 1989 from Horseheads High School. He attended Alfred University and received his undergraduate degree in Political Science in 1993. While at Alfred Tom also was captain of the men’s swim team and a first team Division III All-American athlete. “Quite an accomplishment, given the state of my current physique,” Tom laughs now.
Tom then attended Ohio Northern University College of Law, graduating in 1996. He was admitted to the New York State Bar in 1997. “I remember my wife and best friend, Jean, worked as a waitress at Chili’s while I practiced for the bar exam and we started our family together,” Tom says. “She also worked midnights at Strong Memorial, so I could start my legal career.”
Tom worked as an associate attorney in the Litigation Department at Gallo & Iacovangelo, LLP, in Rochester until 1999. In 1999, Tom moved back to Corning, opening his private practice in rented space no bigger than their bedroom. He and Jean and their children Autumn, 13, and Will, 11 live in the home Tom grew up in – the same house his grandfather built.
For more than ten years,Tom was an attorney in private practice in Corning. He was also a co-owner of other businesses dealing with real estate and mortgage brokerage. Over the years, Tom’s businesses grew to employ 25 people. He served on many boards in the community and was elected Mayor of the City of Corning in November, 2007.
A commitment to family and friends, an enduring love for his hometown, and a deep concern about the “personal, petty political issues” he saw at City Hall were themes that helped propel him to the first political office he ever held. During his successful bid to become mayor, Tom produced a number of YouTube® videos in which he talked about the proud family he comes from; the spiritual and community values he holds deeply; and the lessons life taught him along the way.
Former Representative Amo Houghton, no stranger to politics having served Western New York for nearly two decades, says, “I could go on forever (about Tom Reed). “I knew Tom’s grandfather. I went to school with his father. This Congressional District is an extraordinary place, requiring someone who is decent, and honest, and someone we can be proud of,” Houghton said. “Tom is that kind of man.”
Concerning his bid for the 23rd Congressional District, Tom says, “I still believe that the power of our nation is not in the government we create, but rather the honest individuals who show up day in and day out and work for a living. We must again become a nation of personal accountability. One where our government does not guarantee success to everyone, but rather simply guarantees the individual is given the opportunity to succeed.”
Paid for by Tom Reed for Congress