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Mayor of New Haven, CT
John DeStefano Jr. was sworn in as the 49th mayor of the City of New Haven on January 1, 1994. During his tenure, Mayor DeStefano has worked to make New Haven an open and welcoming community that promotes economic and social mobility for all residents.
Mayor DeStefano has worked with residents across the city to advance the academic success of public school children through School Change, to transform our city center into a strong job and tax generator, and to strengthen our neighborhoods through community policing, support for youth, and through access to safe and affordable housing.
Under Mayor DeStefano’s leadership, virtually every public school has been rebuilt and the schools are seeing steady substantial improvements in academic performance. The public schools now offer the largest inter-district magnet program in the state with free pre-kindergarten classes, state of the art technology and libraries. In its second year, New Haven Promise provided 123 students with college scholarships, and has already begun to instill college aspirations in the youngest of students.
Despite the global recession, New Haven is experiencing one of the largest building booms in its history. Under Mayor DeStefano’s leadership, the City center has undergone a dramatic transformation and has emerged as a national center for life and biosciences. Downtown commercial, residential, and retail occupancies stand at record lows.
Mayor DeStefano is the son of a New Haven police officer and a lifelong City resident. John and his wife Kathy DeStefano met at the University of Connecticut as undergraduates, where he also earned a Masters in Public Administration. Kathy is a kindergarten teacher and they are the parents of two sons, Dan and Jim.