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"I cannot fathom anything even remotely as urgent as this."
"And I intend to keep it that way.
– General Diatta Ndoye and Kovich, 3190 ("The Galactic Barrier")

Doctor Kovich was a Human Federation official who lived in the 32nd century.

Kovich had been fascinated by Terran history and methodology since he was a boy. (DIS: "Die Trying") His professional expertise included a background in cognitive science with a specialty in artificial sentience and intelligence. (DIS: "...But to Connect")

Kovich's exact position in Federation hierarchy was mysterious, but he had access to extremely clandestine information and held great power as he was able to order a Red Directive and at least at that moment was able to give orders even to Starfleet's commander in chief Fleet Admiral Vance and supersede even his authority. However, Kovich privately showed a degree of frustration with the secrecy with which he was forced to operate, allowing Sylvia Tilly to hack the information so that Kovich could share it with Vance and Burnham. (DIS: "Red Directive")

He later revealed that "Kovich" was actually a code name, and he was really the temporal agent Daniels from the Enterprise NX-01 "and other places." Kovich also noted that he had lived many years and many lives with his collection of historical objects implying connections to the events of the 24th century, specifically the crews of the USS Enterprise-D and Deep Space 9. (DIS: "Life, Itself")

Quick Answers

Who is the actor behind the character of Dr. Kovich in Star Trek: Discovery? toggle section
David Cronenberg plays the role of Dr. Kovich in Star Trek: Discovery. The character, a Federation agent, is suggested to hold the rank of commodore, as indicated by his tricom badge. The name "Kovich" was confirmed in the episode titled "All Is Possible".
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What was Dr. Kovich's role and position within the Federation hierarchy? toggle section
Dr. Kovich held the position of a Federation official and agent. His tricom badge indicated a rank of commodore, although he did not wear a Starfleet uniform and displayed authority over higher-ranking officers. His specialty lay in artificial sentience, leading to his involvement in the assessment of Zora, the sentient computer of the USS Discovery.
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What was Dr. Kovich's professional background and specialty? toggle section
Dr. Kovich was a Human Federation official from the 32nd century. Despite not wearing a Starfleet uniform, his tricom badge indicated a rank of commodore. His professional interests lay in Terran history and methodology, a fascination he held since childhood.
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What was the significance of Dr. Kovich's fascination with Terran history and methodology? toggle section
Dr. Kovich's interest in Terran history and methodology was rooted in his curiosity about species that acted for the sake of action. This interest started in his youth and persisted into adulthood. In 3189, he discussed his fascination with the Terran Empire's fall centuries ago with Philippa Georgiou. His professional background in cognitive science, specializing in artificial sentience and intelligence, provided further context to his interest in the Terran Empire, noted for its distinct motivations and behaviors.
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In 3189, he interrogated Philippa Georgiou upon her arrival at Federation Headquarters. He was knowledgeable about Terran history and raised the supposition that the Terran Empire was "based on the maxim 'because we feel like it'". He was also curious about Georgiou, particularly her reasons for travelling to the future, and attempted to learn about her from her own questions and curiosity. He allowed her to destroy his tricom badge in the process, but offered as little response to her questions as possible. He did volunteer the knowledge that the Terran Empire "fell centuries ago", however, and that no crossing between universes had been made "in over 500 years", causing Georgiou visible distress. (DIS: "Die Trying")

Dr. Hugh Culber consulted Kovich in trying to find a cure for the ailment that had inflicted Georgiou due to her being both displaced temporally and dimensionally. He then showed Culber a holographic depiction of Yor, a time soldier and the only other individual known to have crossed both time and dimensions. Kovich told Culber that there was no way to cure Georgiou, but Culber proved him wrong after consulting the USS Discovery's computer which had merged with the Sphere data, leading them to a supposed answer on Dannus V. (DIS: "Terra Firma, Part 1")

During Osyraa's commandeering of Discovery, Kovich expressed his reservations to Charles Vance about possibly destroying Discovery to keep it out of Emerald Chain hands, as he saw Discovery's spore drive as the way to reunite the Federation. (DIS: "That Hope Is You, Part 2")

In 3190, Kovich began working with the newly-reopened Starfleet Academy as a consultant, and saw that despite being the best their worlds had to offer, the cadets had no experience working as a team, especially with people outside of their own species. Seeking a solution, he contacted Dr. Culber, asking for a Discovery crew member to lead a group of cadets in a team-building exercise, believing that the crew had something special to offer because they came from an era before the Burn. Culber recommended Lieutenant Sylvia Tilly, who had been looking for a challenge outside of her "comfort zone". Following the success of the exercise, Kovich offered Tilly a teaching position at the Academy, and she accepted. (DIS: "All Is Possible")

Culber later reached out to Kovich, recalling Kovich's brutal honesty with Georgiou, to discuss his struggle handling the DMA threat. Kovich reminded Culber to take his own advice, that he was only Human, and he should allow himself time to rest. (DIS: "The Examples")

Kovich uses privacy mode

Kovich assists Discovery to evaluate Zora

Because of his expertise in artificial sentience, Admiral Vance asked him to assist Discovery when Zora would not share coordinates related to species behind the DMA. Upon evaluation, Kovich determined Zora was a new lifeform, and supported her joining Starfleet. (DIS: "...But to Connect")

Kovich later participated in a task force to identify how to communicate with Species 10-C. Though he couldn't participate in the mission beyond the galactic barrier to handle other urgent matters he remained mysterious about, he recommended Dr. Hirai. (DIS: "The Galactic Barrier")

Kovich later assigned Discovery to a top secret Red Directive mission, refusing to share the details even with Admiral Vance and holding meetings in his Infinity Room. Kovich's secrecy frustrated Vance to the point that he allowed Tilly to hack into the Federation database for more information. Burnham later found Kovich trying to locate the planet with the twin moons mentioned in Dr. Vellek's distress call, revealing that she already knew where it was and demanding answers from Kovich. Kovich admitted that he knew about Tilly's hacking, but he was relieved as it allowed Kovich to reveal the truth to Burnham. Kovich explained that Vellek was present when Captain Jean-Luc Picard had discovered the message from the Progenitors, the race that seeded humanoid life in the galaxy, and Vellek had found the technology that the Progenitors had used to do it. The Progenitors and their actions had been a secret for over 800 years, but Kovich asked Burnham to find where Vellek had hidden the technology that the Progenitors had used to create humanoid life. (DIS: "Red Directive")

After Discovery found three of the five map pieces, Kovich brought Burnham back to the Infinity Room and revealed that he had the USS Locherer searching for Moll and L'ak. In the meantime, Kovich had discovered the names of the scientists who had hidden the Progenitors' technology despite the scientists erasing themselves from every database that they could find, identifying them as Jinaal Bix, Carmen Cho, Marina Derex, Hitoroshi Kreel, and Vellek along with the fact that they were a Trill, Terran, Betazoid, Denobulan, and Romulan respectively. Kovich gave Burnham the list which he had written on a genuine 21st century legal pad, although the scientist was evasive on how he'd gotten his hands on something over a thousand years old. The information uncovered by Kovich helped Discovery to solve their clue and locate the fourth map piece. (DIS: "Whistlespeak")

After the mission, Burnham met with Kovich who told her that the Red Directive had officially been closed, all records classified, and no one would ever know about the Progenitors' technology. Kovich also intended to offer Moll a job once her prison sentence was over. Kovich noted that over his many years and many lives, he had met few who had impressed and aggravated him as much Burnham. Kovich had Burnham keep her infinity pin just in case and Burnham noticed Kovich's collection of historical objects which included a bottle of Chateau Picard, Geordi La Forge's original VISOR, and Benjamin Sisko's baseball. Burnham realized that "Kovich" was actually a code name and asked for his real name. After stating that his real identity was a bit of Red Directive itself, Kovich formally introduced himself as "Agent Daniels, USS Enterprise and other places."

Several weeks later, Burnham and Booker accepted a new mission from Kovich. (DIS: "Life, Itself")



Background information

Kovich was portrayed by David Cronenberg. Kovich's name was revealed in promotional materials for Star Trek: Discovery, but was not confirmed in dialogue until DIS: "All Is Possible".

Though Kovich doesn't wear a Starfleet uniform, his tricom badge suggests a rank of commodore, according to concept art outlining the 32nd century rank system. (TRR: "Scavengers") published an article describing Kovich as a "Federation agent". [1]

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