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Edward F. Cox

Edward Cox
Cox with his wife, Tricia (1972)
Chairman of the New York State
Republican Committee
Assumed office
Preceded by Joseph Mondello
Personal details
Born Edward Ridley Finch Cox
(1946-10-02) October 2, 1946
Southampton, New York, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Tricia Nixon (1971–present)
Children Christopher
Alma mater Princeton University
Harvard Law School
Religion Episcopal

Edward Ridley Finch Cox (born October 2, 1946) is an American politician who is currently the chairman of the New York Republican State Committee. He is the son-in-law of President Richard M. Nixon and First Lady Pat Nixon. Cox is a lawyer in the Manhattan law firm of Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP where he has served as the Chairman of the Corporate Department and a member of the Management Committee.


  • Early life 1
  • Professional history 2
  • Political career 3
    • 2006 3.1
    • New York Republican Party Chairman (2009-present) 3.2
  • Personal life 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Early life

He was born to Howard Ellis Cox and Anne Crane Delafield (Finch) Cox in Southampton Hospital in Southampton (village), New York and spent his early years attending Westhampton Beach Elementary School.[1] He is the scion of six old American families, the Winthrops, the Finches, the Coxes, the Livingstons, the Schuylers, and the Delafields. Cox is named for his grandfather, Judge Edward R. Finch, a prominent New York jurist who served as a State court judge from 1915 to 1943 and rose to be the Presiding Justice of the State's First Department and an Associate Judge on the State's highest court, the New York Court of Appeals.[2] His father, Howard Ellis Cox, was a decorated World War II aviator and a New York lawyer and Long Island real estate developer.

Cox graduated from Princeton University (the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, class of 1968) and Harvard Law School (class of 1972). After graduating from college, Cox worked with the consumer advocate Ralph Nader as a founder of what came to be called "Nader's Raiders," co-authoring The Nader Report on the Federal Trade Commission (Baron Press, 1969) and writing articles and editorials for The New Republic. Upon graduating from law school in 1972, Cox campaigned extensively for the reelection of his father-in-law, President Nixon, and after the election he and his wife traveled to Europe and the Soviet Union, meeting privately with leaders and their families. Cox subsequently was a lawyer with Cravath, Swaine & Moore in New York.

From 1981 to 1983 Cox served in the Reagan Administration as the Senior Vice President and General Counsel of a government corporation, The United States Synthetic Fuels Corporation. In 1983, Cox returned to the practice of law in New York where he has also served in a number of volunteer governmental and non-governmental charitable posts: a founding director of the Student Sponsor Partners (supporting and mentoring inner-city parochial school students, 1985 to present), a Commissioner of the Commission on Judicial Nomination (nominating candidates for New York's highest court, 1991 to 2009), Chairman of the New York Council of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (1995 to 2008), Chairman of the New York League of Conservation Voters Education Fund (1995 to present), a Trustee of the State University of New York (SUNY)(1995 to present) and a director of the New York Institute for Special Education (1994 to present). As a Trustee, Cox was a founder of SUNY's Charter School Institute (which authorizes charter schools), of its Community College Committee, of its Institute for Community College Development and of its Task Force on Energy and the Environment. In these capacities he fostered the development of cutting edge policies and programs for K-12 education, teacher training and facilities evaluation and has been a leader in energy and environmental policy making. After the 2006 election, Cox chaired Attorney-Elect Andrew Cuomo's environmental transition team. In 2007 and 2008, Cox chaired John McCain's New York campaign. In 2008, Cox was named in Super Lawyers in the area of Securities & Corporate Finance and his firm was ranked third on The American Lawyer’s 2008 "A-List" of leading law firms in the United States.

While practicing law, Cox has also served three presidents, and particularly President Nixon, in the international arena.

Professional history

After attending Harvard Law School, Cox was admitted to the New York State bar in 1973. In 1974 he was admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, Eastern District of New York, and the U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit.

Cox has held a number of positions in government and professional organizations. Some of these include: Commissioner, New York State Commission on Judicial Nomination; founder of New York Secretary of State's Corporation Advisory Task Force; Member, New York, Federal and American (Corporate Section) Foreign Policy Association (Director) and Council on Foreign Relations.

At Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler, LLP, he handles corporate and finance law with experience in general representation of public and private entities, including financings, acquisitions, and joint ventures, both domestic and international. He was previously a partner at the now-defunct, old-line New York law firm of Donovan, Leisure, Newton & Irvine. In 1997, Cox and his former law firm were sued, along with their client, by the purchaser in a foreclosure action Florida Power & Light of a failed power plant venture in South Carolina. He is the author of "Reinvigorating the FTC: The Nader Report and the Rise of Consumer Advocacy," 72 Antitrust Law Journal 899 (2005) and has lectured on the legal aspects of cogeneration financing and of the sale of venture companies.

Cox was Battalion Commander of his Army ROTC unit at Princeton and subsequently served with the 11th Special Forces Group.

Political career


Cox was initially rumored to be considering a run for Hillary Clinton (D) in the 2006 New York U.S. Senate election. Initial reports indicated Cox would run as a fiscal conservative and an environmentalist. However, after Governor Pataki endorsed rival Republican, Westchester County District Attorney Jeanine Pirro, Cox announced on October 14 that he was no longer running.[3]

New York Republican Party Chairman (2009-present)

Cox was mentioned in mid-2009 as a potential candidate for governor in 2010.[4] He was elected chairman of the New York State Republican Committee at the Committee's meeting on September 30, 2009.[5] Cox had a seven-point "agenda for the future" when elected chairman:

  1. to be "a full-time chairman"
  2. to win election victories in the 2009 local elections
  3. to re-build the state party's staff
  4. to "re-establish credibility" of the state party nationally
  5. to raise money
  6. to recruit a "slate of candidates up and down the ballot."
  7. to win statewide elections in 2010.[6]

Personal life

In 1971, Cox married Tricia Nixon Cox, daughter of then-President Nixon, in a White House Rose Garden ceremony. The wedding was described in Life Magazine as "akin to American royalty." Tricia and Edward have a son, Christopher N. Cox. They currently reside on Long Island, New York.


  1. ^
  2. ^ The New York Times, April 16, 1965
  3. ^ Hernandez, Raymond; Cooper, Michael (October 15, 2005). "Pirro's Path to Republican Nomination Is Clearer". New York Times. Archived from the original on January 16, 2014. Retrieved December 19, 2008. 
  4. ^ Vielkind, Jimmy (2009-05-29). Collins, Lazio Get to Sit Up Front at Conservative Party Dinner.
  5. ^ Hakim, Danny (September 29, 2009). "For Nixon In-Law, G.O.P. Post and a Giuliani Clash". New York Times. Archived from the original on July 3, 2014. Retrieved October 31, 2009. 
  6. ^ Freedlander, David (April 14, 2010). "Ed Cox and the Republican Restoration". Capitol News. p. 17. Retrieved August 5, 2010. 

External links

  • Biography from Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP
  • Ed Cox on The George Jarkesy Show 1.10.12
Party political offices
Preceded by
Joseph Mondello
Chairperson of the New York Republican State Committee
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