- Chief Deputy President Pro Tempore; Federal Relations Liaison
- Chair: Insurance & Real Estate
- Vice Chair: Banks; Commerce; Public Health
- Member: Executive & Legislative Nominations; Legislative Management
First elected to the Connecticut State Senate in November of 1992, Joseph J. Crisco, Jr. represents the 17th Senatorial District towns of Ansonia, Beacon Falls, Bethany, Derby, Hamden, Naugatuck, and Woodbridge.
Now serving his twelfth term, Senator Crisco is part of the leadership team for the Senate Democratic Caucus. He is the Chief Deputy President Pro Tempore and also serves as the Federal Relations Liaison for the caucus. Senator Crisco is currently Senate Chair of the Insurance & Real Estate Committee and Vice Chair of the Banks, Commerce and Public Health Committees. He is also a member of the Executive & Legislative Nominations and Legislative Management Committees.
With responsibility for the Insurance Committee, Senator Crisco has helped reaffirm Connecticut’s status as the insurance capital of the world—his work to expand coverage for breast cancer screenings has become a national and international model, and his Biomedical Research Fund—with revenue from tobacco settlement payments to the state—underwrites research into heart disease, cancer, smoking related illnesses, Alzheimer’s, stroke and diabetes.
Before being elected to the State Senate, Senator Crisco worked for the United Technologies Corporation. He joined UTC in 1976, serving in government liaison assignments before being named Director of Government Affairs in 1986. He was promoted to National Director of State and Local Government Affairs in 1990. Senator Crisco has also been an associate professor of economics at Quinnipiac University, Sacred Heart University, and the University of New Haven.
Each year, Senator Crisco sponsors a Senior Fair, which provides health information and services to seniors in the 17th District. The fair has attracted more than 800 seniors, and it is one of the largest events of its kind held in Connecticut.
Senator Crisco has also sponsored the Annual Young Women in Technology Expo to help introduce seventh grade women to the many fields in which the knowledge of technology plays a critical role. The Expo is a day-long series of hands-on technology workshops on the campus of Quinnipiac University.
Long active in community service, Senator Crisco has served as Citizen Appointee to the Connecticut Legislative Task Force on Manufacturing, and as President of the University of Connecticut Alumni Association. He served as a member of the University of Connecticut Board of Trustees, the State Board of Higher Education, the Governor’s Commission on Financial Assistance for Higher Education, the Woodbridge Board of Education and the State Community and Technical Colleges Board of Trustees.
Senator Crisco, long known as an advocate for senior citizens, quality health care and economic development, is the recipient of many awards and honors that include being recognized for his legislative leadership by United Seniors in Action and the Birmingham Group.
In addition, Senator Crisco has received a Leadership Award from Keep the Promise for his work on behalf of mental health, the Champion of Exposing the Secret Award from Are You Dense for his work on behalf of early detection of breast cancer for women with dense breast tissue, the Connecticut Medical Society Legislative Award for Commitment to Quality of Patient Care, the Wilbur Cross Humanities Award, the Connecticut Council of Independent Colleges Award for Distinguished Service, a Distinguished Service Award from the Italian Government, a Legislative Leadership Award from the Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce, and has been recognized for his commitment to home health care and by the State Firemen’s Association.
Senator Crisco received the Military Order of the Purple Heart Citation for his work on behalf of veterans and their families. He was named an Indoor Air Quality Hero for his efforts to help protect students and school employees from environmental health hazards, and the classrooms at the Redwing Pond House at the Ansonia Nature and Recreation Center were named after Senator Crisco when he helped obtain $30,000 in funding for the project.
Senator Crisco has also served as a member of several task forces and study groups. His present and past appointments include: Jobs for the Future Task Force, Naugatuck Valley Economic Study, State Commission on Capitol Preservation and Restoration, Revenue Services Small- and Medium-Sized Users Committee, the Governor’s Federal Funds Advisory Committee, Uncompensated Care Task Force, and the State Planning and Conservation Commission. Senator Crisco also serves on the Executive Committee of the National Conference of Insurance Legislators.
Senator Crisco’s legislative accomplishments include passage of his Investment Tax Credit, ConnPACE COLA, Deployment Center, Corridor Zone, and Diabetes Coverage bills. Additionally, Senator Crisco was proud to work successfully to obtain key funding for the refurbishment of the Sterling Opera House in Derby, a project that will help to spark redevelopment efforts both in Derby and throughout the Valley, as well as other important projects such as the expansion of the Ansonia Nature Center and the enhancement of the Bethany Historical Society.
In August 1998, Senator Crisco served as honorary chairman of Connecticut’s first “Family Day,” which is now an annual event. “Family Day” promotes the virtues of family and parenting by setting aside a day each year for families to spend together.
Senator Crisco holds a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from the University of Connecticut and studied at the graduate level at Trinity College in Hartford. Raised in New Haven, he lives in Woodbridge with his wife, Pat. They have six children and 18 grandchildren.