Mayor DeStefano To Bring City Lessons to Yale as Chubb Fellow

Following the launch of New Haven Promise, a Yale-funded college scholarship program for public school students, the City’s long-time chief executive, Mayor John DeStefano Jr., will come to the University as a Chubb Fellow on November 16 and 17 to share his insights and vision for the future of New Haven.

The Mayor will deliver the Chubb Fellowship Lecture, titled “City and Civic Infrastructure,” on Nov. 16 at 4 p.m. Free and open to the public, the lecture takes place in Levinson Auditorium of the Sterling Law Buildings, 127 Wall St.

On Nov. 17, the Mayor will participate in the Chubb Fellowship Forum at Yale’s Whitney Humanities Center, 53 Wall Street. Titled “New Haven School Change and the Path to College,” the forum will explore the critical factors required for urban schools to address the challenges of creating a college-going culture and raising the proportion of students who succeed in winning admission to college and persist in attaining a college degree. In addition to the Mayor, the panel will include two other nationally noted figures in the area of school change and preparation for college success: Randi Weingarten, president, American Federation of Teachers, and J.B. Schramm ’86, founder & CEO of College Summit, an organization that works with 25,000 under-resourced students in school districts across America on college readiness and college admissions. Jeff Brenzel, Yale dean of undergraduate admissions and national chair of the College Board’s online college guidance and college readiness project, will be the discussion moderator. The forum takes place 4–5:15 p.m. It is free and open to the public.

DeStefano was sworn in as the 49th mayor of New Haven on Jan. 1, 1994, and is now serving his ninth consecutive term in office. Throughout that time, he has nurtured a civic culture in the city while stressing economic and social entrepreneurship.

During DeStefano’s tenure, virtually every public school has been rebuilt under the $1.5 billion Citywide School Construction Program. In 2009, the Mayor and school board announced the School Change Initiative, an ambitious program with a visionary approach to public school education and a commitment to making college an achievable goal for all of the City’s school children. The New Haven Promise initiative announced on Tuesday is yet another example of the City and the University working together to enrich the experience and broaden the horizons of New Haven public school students.

With the leadership of DeStefano and the dedication of Yale President Richard C. Levin, the City center has undergone a dramatic transformation. A community of some 120,000 residents, the City has emerged as a national center of medicine and the biosciences, anchored by the support of University and the expansion of Yale New Haven Hospital. Downtown commercial, residential and retail occupancies stand at record highs, thanks in large part to partnership projects between the Mayor’s Office and the Yale administration, which have become models for other cities.

Just last month, the U.S. Department of Transportation announced funding of the Downtown Crossing project, which will remove the 1960s-era limited express highway that has divided the central business district from the City’s principal rail station and rapidly growing medical research campus and hospital.

DeStefano has served as the president of the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities and the National League of Cities, the oldest and largest organization representing America’s cities and towns. During his tenure, New Haven has been named an “All American City” three times.

A native of New Haven and lifelong City resident, the Mayor is the son of a New Haven police officer. He and his wife, Kathy DeStefano, met at the University of Connecticut as undergraduates, where he also earned a master’s in public administration. The couple are the parents of two sons.

The Chubb Fellowship is devoted to encouraging and aiding Yale students interested in the operations of government and in public service. Established in 1936 through the generosity of Hendon Chubb (Yale 1895), the program is based in Timothy Dwight College, one of Yale’s residential colleges. Each year three or four distinguished men and women have been appointed as visiting Chubb Fellows. Chubb Fellows spend their time at Yale in close, informal contact with students and deliver a public lecture. Former Chubb Fellows include Presidents George W. Bush, Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter; authors Octavio Paz, Carlos Fuentes and Toni Morrison; filmmaker Sofia Coppola; architect Frank Gehry; choreographer Mikhail Baryshnikov; and journalist Walter Cronkite.

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