Thomas “Tom” Kovacs of Santa Monica, California, coached Special Olympics athletics for 15 years. He served as a Special Olympics Southern California athletics coach and team physician in the 2014, 2018 and 2022 Special Olympics USA Games. In the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023, Tom will represent Special Olympics USA in a medical staff role. This will be his fourth time attending a Special Olympics World Games in this role. Special Olympics has introduced Tom to an incredible array of athletes of all ages, showing him just how much his encouragement and support can mean to them. His daughter Sarah, a Special Olympics athlete, was hospitalized on her first birthday and, after spending three months in the intensive care unit, has grown to become an incredible middle-distance runner, with Tom as her coach. Tom has three children, Alexander, Trevor and Sarah, and takes great pride in their accomplishments.
Tom is employed as a professor of medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles in the Division of Digestive Diseases. He enjoys running, attending musical theatre performances with his daughter and reading medical literature. Spending time with Special Olympics athletes, he is fulfilled in watching them train hard, have fun and achieve personal bests.