Koh resigns Select Board for job with Biden administration

Courtesy photoDan Koh has resigned the Andover Select Board and is taking a job with the U.S. Department of Labor. 

ANDOVER — Select Board member Dan Koh resigned Monday night because he is taking a job with the U.S. Department of Labor.

"I was recently offered a position to join the Biden-Harris Administration in a role that fights for working people and, after much consideration, have decided to accept that position," Koh said at the meeting. "As someone whose story is only possible because of a country that puts working people first, it is personal to me, and comes at a critical time in our nation’s history."

Koh is set to be the chief of staff to incoming Department of Labor Secretary Marty Walsh starting Tuesday, according to a report on the Politico website. Neither Koh nor Walsh has confirmed this information because of a Biden-Harris rule that will not allow Koh to speak about the role until he officially starts.

Walsh has yet to be confirmed by the full Senate, but passed his confirmation hearing earlier this month.

Koh will remain an Andover resident with his wife, Amy, and their 6-month-old daughter, Theo, but wanted to resign from the board because of the nature of his new job, he said.

"The Select Board deserves members who can dedicate the appropriate time commensurate with the role," Koh said. "As such, I will be resigning my board membership, effective tomorrow. It is a difficult decision but the right thing to do, and the right thing for Andover."

Koh grew up in Andover and graduated from Phillips Academy. He previously worked as chief of staff to Walsh, the Boston mayor, from 2013 to 2017. Koh left the mayor's office to move back to Andover and run for Congress.

Walsh still is mayor of Boston, pending his confirmation.

In 2018 Koh lost to current Rep. Lori Trahan, D-Westford, by 145 votes, but promised to stay involved in politics. Koh then ran for the Select Board in March 2019, where he overwhelmingly won.

"The experience has been better than I could have ever imagined," Koh said. "I had the opportunity to join four other incredibly thoughtful, passionate, and dedicated public servants in the pursuit to make Andover better — from climate change to economic development to diversity and inclusion. I’ve learned so much and feel so honored to be a part of it." 

Koh was rumored to run for Congress in 2020, but ultimately declined, opting instead to help democrats regain the White House, he previously told The Eagle-Tribune.

During his brief hiatus from professional politics, Koh was the chief operating officer of Boston software company HqO.

The ability to stay involved at a local political level was incredibly rewarding, he said.

"I was also invigorated by the dedicated public servants who work every day to make our town what it is," Koh said, thanking Town Manager Andrew Flanagan and others he's worked with.

"Thank you to the Select Board and the residents of the town for the tremendous honor," Koh said. "I look forward to staying involved as a resident, and am excited for all you’ll do in the future."

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