Alumnus dedicates life of service to New Haven and its residents

January 25, 2024

Dean Criscio smiles for a headshot.

Dean Criscio ’92 is a self-proclaimed “numbers man” and has used his college career as an accounting major to propel him in serving New Haven for the past 29 years.

As the first member of his family to graduate college, Criscio shared how emotional graduation day was for him. He said he will forever cherish that moment as a Bobcat. During his time as a student, Criscio completed an internship at the controller’s office in New Haven, then became an account clerk and finally an internal auditor in 1999.

The city of New Haven holds a special place in his heart and in November of 2023, he joined the fire department as a management and policy analyst.

“For the past three decades in the controller's office, I developed many relationships — not only within the city but with other financial and powerful individuals,” said Criscio. “There wasn't a day that went by that I didn’t receive valuable knowledge from my superiors where I learned all facets of finance. Being a part of the city of New Haven not only made me wiser but very aware of how my life has changed.”

In his new role, the alumnus is responsible for reviewing payroll for nearly 400 firefighters, as well as the fire department’s budget. He will also be applying for federal and state grants to update and upgrade their services, along with reviewing policies to better enhance the department.

“I was born and raised in New Haven and this is my way of paying back to all of those that respected me and treated me as a native son,” Criscio said.

Not only has he dedicated his entire professional career to the city, but Criscio’s father and brother work within the public works department, developing a lasting legacy for the family.

“My advice to the future students of Quinnipiac would be to believe in yourself,” said Criscio. “Don't let anyone discourage you from achieving your best or let you believe that you will never accomplish anything. If I had listened to those people over 30 years ago, who knows where I would be today? Always remember that education is the foundation of a better life. The more you learn the stronger you become."

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