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Tom McVea

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Tom McVea

Thomas Houston "Tom" McVea
Louisiana State Representative from District 62 (the Florida Parishes of East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Livingston, St. Helena Parish, Tangipahoa, and West Feliciana; in 2012, the district includes only East Baton Rouge and the two Feliciana parishes.)
In office
Preceded by John D. Travis
Succeeded by Kenny Havard
In office
Preceded by Joe Allen Fudge
Succeeded by John D. Travis
Personal details
Born (1945-03-02) March 2, 1945
Columbia, Boone County
Missouri, USA
Nationality American
Political party Democrat-turned-Republican
Spouse(s) Antoinette Stephens "Toni" McVea
Residence St. Francisville, West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana
Alma mater St. Francisville High School

Louisiana State University

Occupation Cattleman
Religion Presbyterian

Thomas Houston McVea, known as Tom McVea (born March 2, 1945), is a cattleman from St. Francisville in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana, who is a Republican former member of the Louisiana House of Representatives from District 62, which encompasses parts of the Florida Parishes of East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Livingston, St. Helena, Tangipahoa, and West Feliciana. The district office is located in Jackson in East Feliciana Parish.[1] In 2012, the district was reconfigured to include only parts of East Baton Rouge Parish and the two Felicianas.


McVea was born in Columbia, Mississippi. He graduated from St. Francisville High School, now West Feliciana High School, in St. Francisville, the parish seat of West Feliciana Parish. In 1972, McVea graduated from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. He has lived in West Feliciana, where he served on the police jury, the governing council of the parish. McVea is married to the former Antoinette "Toni" Stephens. He is Presbyterian.[2]


From 1980 to 1984, during the administration of Republican Governor David C. Treen, McVea was a Democratic member of the state House. More than sixteen years later, he returned to represent the reconfigured District 62. McVea won a special election in 2000 called because of the resignation of Democratic Representative John D. Travis. By this time that McVea began his second three-term stint in the legislature, he had already switched to the GOP.[3] Under legislative rules, McVea is term-limited in the October 22, 2011, nonpartisan blanket primary.

On November 7, 2000, McVea won the special election runoff to fill the District 62 seat by defeating a Democrat, Myron Hall, 9,161 votes (52 percent) to 8,385 (48 percent).[4]

McVea was unopposed in 2003. In 2007, he polled nearly 57 percent of the vote against a Democrat, David Ridder (34.8 percent), and another Republican, Anthony J. Denenea, Jr. (9.6 percent).[5] McVea was able to win as a Republican because only half of the district includes the Democratic strongholds of St. Helena and East and West Feliciana, the latter his home base.[6]

In 2013, former Representative McVea ran unsuccessfully for the newly established position of president of West Feliciana Parish. He was defeated, 59-41 percent, by another Republican, Kevin Couhig, the CEO of Source Capital Corp., who had never before sought public office. Couhig is a brother of Rob Couhig, a New Orleans businessman and frequent Republican political candidate. Under the new West Feliciana Parish charter, four single-member council districts and one at-large council member will supersede the former seven police jurors, whose offices will be phased out of existence. Kevin Couhig is an advocate of what he calls "smart growth" so that economic development will expand with the parish maintaining its scenic beauty.[7]

Legislative matters

House District 62 in East and West Feliciana parishes has considerable state government employment at hospitals and correctional faciities. West Feliciana is a tourist mecca with antique shops and bed and breakfast facilities. There are also some large employers, including chemical plants and Entergy’s Riverbend Nuclear Energy plant. The district supports some agriculture, primarily dairy and cattle farming. Families and white collar workers have increasingly vacated the Baton Rouge area in search of quieter towns like St. Francisville and surrounding communities in West Feliciana Parish.

As a representative, McVea pushed for vocational education in high schools[6] and advocates for improved teacher salaries.[6] He has also pushed for a plan to obtain permanent financing for the state's highways. He has encouraged the Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism to study ways of raising additional revenue through the marketing of the state's historic sites.[6] In his final term, McVea was the vice chairman of the House Insurance Committee. He also served on Appropriations, the Joint Legislative Committee on the Budget, and the Special Committee on Military and Veterans Affairs.[1]

In the contest to succeed the term-limited McVea, Republican Kenny Havard of St. Francisville defeated the Democrat Ken Dawson in the general election held on November 19, 2011. Havard polled 6,626 votes (61.4 percent) to Dawson's 4,170 (38.6 percent).[8]


  1. ^ a b "Rep. Thomas H. McVea". Retrieved July 18, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Rep. Thomas McVea (R)". Retrieved July 18, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Membership in the Louisiana House of Representatives, 1812-2012". Retrieved July 16, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Louisiana general election returns, November 7, 2000". Retrieved July 18, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Louisiana primary election returns, October 20, 2007". Retrieved July 18, 2011. 
  6. ^ a b c d "House member, Rep. McVea (R)". Retrieved July 18, 2011. 
  7. ^ "Steven Ward, Couhig becomes first West Feliciana Parish president, November 18, 2013".  
  8. ^ Louisiana Secretary of State, General election returns, November 19, 2011
Louisiana House of Representatives
Preceded by
Joe Allen Fudge
Louisiana State Representative from East and West Feliciana parishes

Thomas Houston "Tom" McVea

Succeeded by
John D. Travis
Preceded by
John D. Travis
Louisiana State Representative from District 62 (the Florida Parishes of East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Livingston, St. Helena Parish, Tangipahoa, and West Feliciana; in 2012, the district includes East Baton Rouge and the two Feliciana parishes.)

Thomas Houston "Tom" McVea

Succeeded by
Kenny Havard
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