David Oh is a Republican Councilman At-Large. He was first elected in 2011 and re-elected in 2015. He was the top vote-getter in both primaries. On Council, David serves as Minority Whip and Chair of the Committee on Global Opportunities & the Creative/Innovative Economy. He is the only member of Council who is a veteran.
From the very start, David has taken on Philadelphia’s most pressing issues. He introduced bills to lower the wage tax by $100 million over 11 years, reform public education based on global best practices, address the pension problem, attract new employers, make local government more transparent and accountable, collect delinquent taxes, protect homeowners from squatters, and fund Community College of Philadelphia as required by state law. David is a champion for small businesses and organized a Small Business Council to help small businesses fight the many taxes, penalties and regulations that are putting them out of business. He and Councilman O’Neill are the only two Council members that voted against the Resolution supporting Sanctuary City, which in reality is an executive order by the Mayor requiring that the Police Commissioner and Prison Commissioner not cooperate with federal law enforcement when an undocumented alien is in police custody or in prison. David has traveled at his own expense to meet with top executives of multi-national corporations about locating or investing in Philadelphia.
David created Philadelphia’s veteran’s hiring tax credit ($5,000 off business taxes for up to 3 years for each returning veteran hired; maximum of $15,000 per veteran). He co-sponsored a bill that doubled payouts to immediate family of police and firefighters who die in the line of duty (from $50,000 to $100,000). David is a leader in the fight against the soda tax. Prior to the vote, he showed through charts, that more than enough money was hidden in the proposed budget to fund pre-k. He was the only Council member to vote against the budget. He leads the fight against the ordinance requiring businesses to take down bullet proof safety glass. He worked with State Representative Todd Stephens to introduce a bill in Harrisburg to preempt this ordinance. He introduced a bill, and is fighting to complete a hearing on it, to reject this year’s property taxes because the assessments were determined to be below industry standard by an independent third-party audit. He created a law that protects new mothers from being fired or harassed in the work place simply because they wish to pump breast milk. It requires a reasonable accommodation, if possible.
David introduced the Resolution that created Philadelphia’s First Responder Appreciation Day. He raises the funds and resources to host events throughout the city. He created PHL LIVE Center Stage, a free music platform for aspiring local musicians. He raises the funds for it through private contributions. Council members At-Large do not have a spending budget or Activities Fund Grant like District Council members. As a result, David hosts an annual Youth Non-Profit Symposium where private foundations and corporations meet non-profits that serve youth and need funding. David also raises funds for veterans. He has raised $67,000.00 for the Green Beret Foundation, Special Forces Association and Wild Bill Guarnere Memorial Statue. During his time as Chairman of the Hajdak-Mokan (Phila.) Chapter of the 82nd Airborne Division Association, David held an annual All American Dinner and Awards Ceremony that raised funds for veteran’s causes. Through a small business, he has provided $27,000.00 worth of requested educational items to 5 public schools over 5 years.
David graduated from Central High School, Dickinson College and Rutgers University Law School-Camden. David started a free legal services clinic while in law school. For this and other works, he was recognized with an award by the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations. David started his legal career as a Philadelphia Assistant District Attorney in 1985. He left the DA’s Office in 1988 to undergo active duty training in the US Army where he graduated from Basic Training, Officer Candidate School, Infantry Officer’s Basic Course and Airborne School. David served as a 2nd Lieutenant in the 20th Special Forces Group (Army National Guard). David is not Q Course qualified. He was called to active duty for Operation Desert Storm. The war ended before his unit was deployed. Upon returning to Philadelphia, he established his law practice and eventually merged his office into a 53-lawyer firm.
David has been very involved in the community over a long period of time. He served on many boards and commissions including First Philadelphia Commercial Bank, PHEC Board overseeing Hahnemann University, Nazareth Hospital, Crime Prevention Association, Nazareth Academy High School, Community College of Philadelphia, Monte Jade Science & Technology Association: Mid-Atlantic Chapter, Philadelphia Commission on Literacy, Philadelphia Police Advisory Commission, Alumni Association of Central High School, Walnut Street Theater, WYBE Public Television, Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians, Tribune Charities and the Federal Judicial Nominating Committee for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. David served as Chairman of the Hajdak-Mokan (Phila) Chapter: 82nd Airborne Division Association. He is a Life Member of both the 82nd Airborne Division Association and the Special Forces Association.
David is married to Hee Sun. They have four children, Hannah (11), Joshua (8), Daniel (7) and Sarah (4).