Toni Harp

New Haven Mayor

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Mayor Harp commenced her leadership service well over two decades ago as a member of New Haven’s Board of Aldermen and later State Senator for Connecticut’s General Assembly’s 10th district. It was in her position rising to one of the most powerful positions as Chairperson for the Senate Appropriations Committee, Mayor Harp earned the signature reputation for being “the conscience of the Senate” at the Capitol. This moniker has not only followed her to serving as Mayor, it drives her fair and focused discretionary decision-making style leadership.

Mayor Harp was raised in Salt Lake City, Utah. She is the youngest of six children. She grew up Baptist in a primarily white and almost universally Mormon community. Mayor Harp’s work ethic and family values were greatly influenced by her parents. Her mother was a Teamster who worked for Greyhound Bus Lines while her father worked for the Santa Fe Railroad.

Mayor Harp leanings towards being a more community activist Mayor for and by the people flourished in the 1960s when she moved to the south side of Chicago to attend college. She earned a degree and began working for the American Society of Planning Officials. Her lifelong interest in urban planning and how cities work can be traced to that first job. From there, Mayor Harp was recruited to study at Yale’s School of Architecture where she earned a Master’s degree. After graduation, she married and started a family – establishing her New Haven roots that began over 40-years ago.

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