Charlie Coviello, multi-mayoral candidate, has been part of the Bridgeport political scene for 50 years, even the paperboy for Bridgeport’s Socialist Mayor Jasper McLevy who served for 24 years before leaving office in 1957. Coviello, a city zoning inspector, is struggling mightily in Bridgeport Hospital with a severe illness, according to his friends and Facebook posts.
“I’ve know him for close to 40 years,” says City Councilman Ernie Newton who’s toiled for decades in East End politics with Coviello. “I met him when he worked for (former mayor) John Mandanici as youth director. When most everyone else turned their back on me Charlie stepped up for me,” Newton added referencing his federal conviction 15 years ago on public corruption charges and his subsequent return to city politics.
Democratic Town Committee member Tony Barr wrote on his Facebook page: “Please keep my mentor and bud Charles Coviello in prayers with respect! I love this man with all my heart and he live in Bridgeport for seventy years.”
Coviello ran for mayor on four occasions, most recently on the New Movement Party line he created in 2015 when Joe Ganim returned to the mayoralty. Coviello who has a real estate background accepted an administration position in zoning last year.
In 2015, after incumbent Mayor Bill Finch lost the Democratic primary to Ganim, Finch was searching for a general election spot on the ballot. Coviello did not give his minor party line to Finch.
Coviello, hired by Mandanici as director of youth services, was part of a cadre of 20-somethings the colorful mayor hired in the mid 1970s after he won the mayoralty in 1975. They were known as the kiddie corps and included attorney Tom Bucci who became mayor, John Norko who served as comptroller, Robert Buccino his chief aide, David Dunn the labor negotiator and Tom Gill, economic development director.
Both Dunn and Gill are part of Ganim’s administration as personnel director and development chief respectfully.
Get well soon Charlie!
Get better Captain! We need you.
Get well Charlie.
Charlie, the best to you for a speedy recovery. What a team Barry and Charlie.
It’s an election year Charlie… No time for you to be under the weather, in bed. Get well and shake things up for the big day in November!…
Get better quick Charlie.all the best!
Charlie is one of my longest, dearest “friends” both personally and politically. We stuck our toes in the political waters back in the ’70’s, and I don’t remember one time in almost 44 years that we ever had an ill word to say of each other. He was a young, handsome teacher when we met, and also the President of the “real” Young Dems. His passion, big heart, and hard work has been a constant in Bridgeport politics. We spoke yesterday, and he promised he’s coming home. One of the best decisions Joey G. made was hiring Charlie to bring his expertise and knowledge to the Zoning Office. Thank you Joe, that was a good one. I ask all that know him to rally around him now, let him see and know how valued he is, and that his work on behalf of the Bridgeport residents is appreciated. Bubba, I remember how you drove him crazy at our Young Dems meetings with your usual intellect and wit. Send him a shout out!!!!
Get well soon. Many people depend upon your kindness and guidance, and there are still a few people that you need to teach them a lesson in honesty and fair play. When you are feeling better WE WILL SET THE RECORD STRAIGHT!
What can I say about my friend and brother. I met charlie through my ( Late Brother Andre).
I had just graduated from Winston Salem State University ( HBCU) It was around the time The later senator Morton was going to run for the Senate and I decided to run for her state rep seat. The party was looking at backing Tom Coble. John Mandini was Mayor at the time and he wanted to meet me. My brother and the mayor were friends. John asked me not to run but i told him i was going to run. Little did i know Charlie asked to meet with him. Charlie was the Youth director at the time. Fast forward charlie has been apart of my life and my family. City council President Deputy speaker of the House of Rep’s to Deputy President Pro-tempo of the State Senate. When i was released from the half-way house in Waterbury he was there to Greet me with my family. Charlie thanks for showing me what a true friend is all about. Through it all you never turned your back on me when others did. You stood shoulder to shoulder with me. Please keep him in Prayer as tears row down my face. Love you.
I remember his radio show from the eighties called “Wake Up Bridgeport
I remember battles in the early Young Dems my group with Keeley, Hernandez, Samowitz, etc against his during late Mandanici
I remember his visionary side kick , Barry Piesner
Both Coviello and Piesner were wells of knowledge about the early nineties foreclosure and abandonment crisis and I interviewed them both, extensively as I completed my Masters Thesis on the same subject
Get well Charlie!
I met Charlie Coviello thru (my late father)Gilbert Garcia Jr (Bar Owner/ La Cueva and El Gordita Restaurant on Park Ave) and purchased my first home thru Charlie – I recently met with him this past June for help on mortgage contact in Florida. He has helped my family members achieve the dream of home ownership, but more than that he is family and my Dad’s best friend. I worked at the mortgage dept./Chase Bank of CT in the 90’s, after work went to his small office on east main next to me dad’s bar, Charlie had his feet up on the desk with those white sox’s, my dad wore the same! I laughed and asked my father is he legit ? 🙂 … he really is, when I closed on my house on my birthday it was the best day! I have since moved and sold that house and no longer have my Dad, but Charlie always treats me like a daughter, to call him anytime- says he went by “my yellow house” and misses my Father to talk politics, and have a drink, he was a bar owner after all. Charlie has seen my kids when toddlers, told me to trust him, “ this is your home buy it” he was right. We love you Charlie, we pray for a speedy recovery, may God Bless you. We all need you emotionally, you have more people to help make those dreams come true…Love You Victoria Garcia-Pol