Kathy Hochul: the friendly face of New York politics

Our Fashion Editor Gail Day reviews the understated, classic looks of New York Lieutenant Governor, Kathy Hochul

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Kathy Hochul
Lieutenant Governor of New York, Kathy Hochul (photo: Timothy Becker, CC4.0)

It’s been said that the people who truly succeed in life are those who can laugh in the face of adversity. Lieutenant Governor of New York, Kathy Hochul, is wonderful testament to this.

She proved her ability to triumph over long odds during her former tenure as a congressman, which required her to defeat a widely favoured Republican in a race few expected her to win.

She is most known these days for her work with the Governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo. In 2014, Hochul was handpicked by Cuomo to be his running mate in his second term. She was a prominent campaigner, acting as the friendly side of the campaign while he was embroiled in a bitter battle of words with his opponents. She was effective at garnering support from a wide-ranging group of voters with a focus specifically on minority sectors within the city. In her words, it presented “a unique chance to return to my passion, fighting for the underdog, challenging the status quo.”

Hochul’s own life story certainly helped give her the common touch: born to parents who had previously lived in a trailer, she too worked several blue-collar jobs throughout her life before qualifying as a lawyer.

2011 would be a turning point in Hochul’s career when, as the County Clerk for Erie County, she won a special election part of New York State then firmly in the grip of Republican power. Her victory would be short-lived sadly as she lost her bid for re-election the following year to a competing candidate.

Bloodied by the loss, Hochul disappeared from public service for some time, accepting a role as vice-president at M&T Bank Corporation in Buffalo. A call from Governor Andrew Cuomo to join him on the 2014 ticket would change all of that, however.

The two made a very effective team in 2014, and 2018 is expected to be no different. Hochul has gone on record to say that, in spite of tactics by her detractors, she is still committed to continuing her efforts in supporting Cuomo and his policies.

As we keep a steady eye on the upcoming gubernatorial race, let’s take a moment to shift focus to her fashion policies. Elegant, understated and classic, these are our favorite style moments of Kathy Hochul:

Violet Daze


A proud supporter of women’s rights, Kathy Hochul poses here with teaching superintendents at the capitol in Albany. Her choice of outfit for the occasion was a violet-colored shift dress ending just below the knee. The dress has a conservative cut, but her policies are 100% progressive!

Skating with Style


All work and no play? Not for this lieutenant governor. She can be seen here at the start of ice skating season in Albany crossing the ice in an outfit primed for the part. Wearing black tights, she went for a bright red coat and a houndstooth scarf to keep fashionably warm.

Making Memories


Once again waving the flag for women’s rights, Hochul is seen here during the Women Lead initiative in New York where she was one of many to place “I Voted” stickers on the grave sites of fallen suffragettes across the state. Here she pauses for a photo in Rochester at the grave of perhaps the most famous, Susan B. Anthony. Her outfit is one of somber style – dark grey trousers covered up with a deep charcoal coat and a colorful scarf.

Hot Pink Hues


What does one wear to the Fashion Institute of Technology? Only your most stylish threads, of course. In honor of the historic New York fashion academy, Hochul chose an elegant shift dress in striking hot pink. A lesson in eye-catching conservative style if ever we’ve seen one.

Kathy Hochul’s Navy Blue Basics


It takes some style savvy to switch up a formal work wardrobe. Kathy Hochul has a knack for styling basic shift dresses into unique ensembles each time. Here, she celebrates the Independence Day surrounded by a group of children. Her body-skimming navy blue shift dress is stylish, elegant and always appropriate.

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