Danbury’s New Mayor – Meet Mayor Joe Cavo

On December 11, Governor Ned Lamont appointed Mark Boughton to serve as commissioner of the Department of Revenue Services.

By Emanuela Palmares

On December 11, Governor Ned Lamont appointed Mark Boughton to serve as commissioner of the Department of Revenue Services. Boughton, the longest-serving mayor in the City of Danbury's history, resigned on December 16 to take on this new role with the state. That same day, Danbury City Council President Joseph M. Cavo was sworn in as mayor of Danbury. 

Joseph M. Cavo has been calling the great City of Danbury his home for the past 35 years. Born in Brooklyn, NY, and raised in Ridgewood, NJ, Joe Cavo relocated to Danbury in 1985, where he was hired by the City of Danbury for Equipment Maintenance. He became the Apparatus Mechanic for the Danbury Fire Department in 1988.

Joe Cavo spent many cherished years with the Danbury Fire Department. He retired in 2017 as the Superintendent of Apparatus, a position he held with the DFD since 2006. During his time with the DFD, he received certification as a Master Level Emergency Technician and was a member of the Connecticut and New England Fire Mechanics Associations.

He was elected to the City Council in 2003 and has been its president since 2006. Cavo represented the Third Ward for eight consecutive terms and had a perfect attendance record for City Council meetings.

"I ran for City Council after hearing Mark speak to his ‘people over politics’ mentality. If there is a way to help him make a difference, I have to get involved. I ran for City Council in 2003 and became the president in 2006. Serving the third ward has been an incredible and humbling honor," he shared in a statement, adding, "During the past several years, I have worked closely with the Office of the Mayor and our city departments. I have been at the decision-making table for numerous initiatives and feel prepared to take on this role, representing all members of our community."

In an exclusive interview, Tribuna asked Mayor Cavo about his new role as the "face of the city," his plans for the city's fight against COVID-19 and his message to the community, in particular, the immigrant community.


Tribuna: As Council president for 14 years, you were very active behind the scenes in the policymaking process. Now, as mayor, you will also be the face of the city. What can Danbury residents expect from Mayor Cavo's approach to the public?


Mayor Joe Cavo: Serving my community on a volunteer basis for these past eighteen years has been a truly humbling honor. As Council president, I was able to meet and work with many different organizations and community members. In my position now as mayor, I find myself gifted with new opportunities to find out not only what but who makes our community special. As we work through the pandemic, I am looking forward to safer interactions with local organizations, residents and community groups that I may not have had the chance to meet with yet. Danbury residents should visit the city's Facebook page and website. I am using these virtual platforms to send you messages and updates about the city's fight against COVID-19 and ongoing community initiatives. I hope that you will follow along. I am also going to continue to encourage all residents to become more actively involved in our community. Volunteering at one of our many dedicated nonprofit organizations is especially important at this time and is a great way to give back. The New American Dream Foundation's senior meal deliveries are one recent community effort that I am proud to see and hope you will consider supporting.


Tribuna: What will be your primary strategy regarding the city's fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and creating an economic recovery for our small businesses? 


Mayor Joe Cavo: We have a strong team leading the city through the COVID-19 pandemic. Since taking office, I have been working closely with our Acting Director of Health, Kara Prunty, to maintain consistent data on the spread of COVID-19 and the city's vaccine rollout plan. I believe that there is a light at the end of this tunnel, but we need everyone's help to get there. That's why I strongly urge all of our residents to wear their masks, wash their handsavoid large groups and socially distance wherever possible. 

The City's Office of Business Advocacy, in coordination with the Chamber of Commerce, has kept a strong eye on economic recovery opportunities for small businesses from DECD and the federal government. I recognize the impact this pandemic has had on small businesses and will continue to communicate these opportunities while advocating for our small business owners. Danbury is the best little city in the state to start a business, and I intend to keep it that way. 


Tribuna: Do you have a message for the community as a whole and a special message for the immigrant community?


Mayor Joe Cavo: First, I want to thank Tribuna for this opportunity to communicate with your readers. Over the past several years as a Danbury resident, I have been able to get to know many members of our community. Still, I recognize my new opportunity to become more involved in the organizations and community groups that make Danbury what it is today. It's my honor to be the mayor of this city, and I am proud that we are recognized as one of the most diverse in the entire country. The immigrant communities here have built Danbury into the city I am happy to call home, and I am grateful for the economic and cultural opportunities that have been created. I am committed to serving every resident in this city, and I am looking forward to opening more conversations about what is most important to each family and member of our community.