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Thomas Joseph Corcoran (born May 23, 1939) is an American former politician. He served four terms in Congress as a U.S. Representative from Illinois (1977–84). He is a Republican.

Tom Corcoran
Corcoran Thomas.png
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 14th district
In office
January 3, 1983 – November 28, 1984
Preceded byJohn N. Erlenborn
Succeeded byJohn E. Grotberg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 15th district
In office
January 3, 1977 – January 3, 1983
Preceded byTim Lee Hall
Succeeded byEdward Rell Madigan
Personal details
Born (1939-05-23) May 23, 1939 (age 80)
Ottawa, Illinois, U.S.
Political partyRepublican


Corcoran was born in Ottawa, Illinois. He graduated from Marquette High School in Ottawa in 1957. He received a B.A. from the University of Notre Dame in 1961 and did graduate work at University of Illinois, the University of Chicago, and Northwestern University.[1]

He served in the United States Army from 1963–65 and then went into politics, serving in staff positions for the State of Illinois Office in Washington, D.C. from 1969–72 and the office of the president of the Illinois Senate. After serving as vice president of the Chicago-North Western Transportation Co. from 1974 to 1976, he was elected to Congress in 1976 and was re-elected three times.[2]

He resigned in 1984 to run for the United States Senate but lost to incumbent Senator Charles Percy in the primary.[citation needed] In 1985, Cocoran announced his intention to run for the United States Senate against Democratic incumbent Alan J. Dixon in the 1986 Senate election. However, after losing several political allies to Inland Steel Company executive George Ranney he dropped out of the primary election.[3] State Representative Judy Koehler defeated Ranney in the Republican primary.[4]

He was appointed to the Board of Directors of United States Synthetic Fuels Corporation in 1984 by President Ronald Reagan.[5] His term was supposed to run through 1990, but the Corporation was abolished in 1985.[6]


  1. ^ Corcoran profile,; accessed February 7, 2017.
  2. ^ Illinois Blue Book 1977-1978 page 52
  3. ^ Dold, R. Bruce (January 7, 1986). "Corcoran Drops Out of Senate Race". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved February 18, 2019.
  4. ^ Green, Paul M. "Party politics in Illinois: Republicans v. Democrats et al.", Illinois Issues, August & September 1986. Retrieved November 1, 2016.
  5. ^ "Nomination of Thomas Corcoran To Be a Member of the Board of Directors of the United States Synthetic Fuels Corporation",, October 10, 1984.
  6. ^ Federal Register: Synthetic Fuels Corporation
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Tim Lee Hall
U.S. Representative of Illinois' 15th Congressional District
Succeeded by
Edward R. Madigan
Preceded by
John N. Erlenborn
U.S. Representative of Illinois' 14th Congressional District
Succeeded by
John E. Grotberg

  This article incorporates public domain material from the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress website