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Mayor Adams' Statement on the Passing of Dedicated Public Servant Joseph Esposito

January 9, 2024

NEW YORK — New York City Mayor Eric Adams today released the following statement on the passing of Joseph Esposito, deputy commissioner for enforcement at the New York City Department of Buildings (DOB). Esposito’s service in city government began when he entered the New York City Police Department (NYPD) as a trainee in 1968. He served in several commands and bureaus before being appointed chief of department in 2000 — holding that role for 12 years, longer than anyone else in city history. He subsequently served as commissioner of what is now called the New York City Office of Emergency Management, before joining DOB in September 2022. Esposito, often known as “Espo,” died yesterday, January 8, 2024:

“Joe Esposito was not only a friend for almost 30 years, but a hero who dedicated his life and career to keeping New Yorkers safe, and he has earned the gratitude of our entire city.

“He served his city on our darkest days and brightest moments, climbing the ranks from an NYPD officer more than half a decade ago to chief of department and then New York City Emergency Management commissioner. He remains the longest-serving chief of department in the NYPD’s history, holding the title of highest-ranking uniformed NYPD officer through the horrific attacks of September 11, 2001, and our recovery after Hurricane Sandy. In recent years, he continued his service as deputy commissioner of the Department of Buildings — still serving New Yorkers, even while battling cancer.

“Espo’s dedication to New York City is unmatched. He worked hard for his city — right up to the end. He left us in a better place, and our city stands together to join his family in grieving his loss while honoring his service and commitment to our city.

“As a mark of respect for Joe’s tremendous service and contributions to our city, I have ordered all flags on all city buildings, as well as stationary flagstaffs throughout the five boroughs, to be lowered to half-staff today.”


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