Celebrating Latino Leaders: George Logan
"When you pull together the strengths of individuals collectively you can get a lot more done."
State Senator - 17th District, Connecticut General Assembly
Hometown: New Haven, Connecticut
For New Haven native Senator George Logan taking the step into politics was a gradual one.
“When I was growing up my goal wasn’t to solve the neighborhood’s problems or the state’s problems or the world’s problems,” Logan says. “I just wanted to get a job so I could maintain myself and in the future, a family. I liked math and science growing up and I thought that engineers all had a job so I figured I wanted to be an engineer.”
Logan went to Trinity College in Hartford, a liberal arts school, to study engineering.
“I wasn’t sure when I was in high school whether I was going to be able to handle an engineering curriculum or if I was going to like it. So I wanted to go to a school that had other options.”
Logan loved it and a year out of college he landed a job at Aquarion Water Company as a Junior Engineer. He would rise through the ranks at Aquarion, becoming a Senior Engineer, the Manager of Engineering Projects, Director of Engineering and finally the Director of Environmental Management, the position he holds now in addition to his role as State Senator of the 17th District. During his early years at Aquarion he also earned a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Bridgeport.
While Logan quickly entered his engineering career after college, his love for community involvement that began at Trinity carried into his volunteer roles.
“I had such a good experience in high school and in college I wanted to encourage and motivate kids,” Logan says.
Logan spent his summers working for the Connecticut Pre-Engineering Program (CPEP) that encourages underrepresented students to pursue STEM careers. He attributes his urge to give back to the mentors he had growing up, specifically at the Albie Booth Boys & Girls Club, now known as the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven.
“When I was in middle school and a bit of high school, I went there just about every day after school,” Logan says. “There were counselors there and folks that I knew weren’t making a ton of money, but they were dedicated to their work and to kids that were growing up in the neighborhood like myself. They gave me advice and encouragement and I always thought that when I made it - and again that meant getting a job - that I too would give back to the community.”
Logan continued to volunteer with CPEP after college and started working with other organizations too. He now serves on the Board of Directors for the Central Connecticut Coast YMCA, Greater Valley Chamber of Commerce, Griffin Hospital and Junior Achievement of Western Connecticut.
Leaping Into Politics
“I enjoy helping out the community and then I saw an opportunity in 2015 where I thought to myself ‘why do we keep sending the same politicians to Hartford in a state of millions of people?’ Why not give it a shot and throw my hat in the ring and see if I could make even a bigger difference in my immediate community and state.”
In 2016, Logan indeed threw his hat in the ring and won. He beat incumbent State Senator Joe Crisco in the 17th District, which includes Ansonia, Beacon Falls, Bethany, Derby, Hamden, Naugatuck and Woodbridge. While Logan was successful in his campaign, he would love to see more Latinos in political leadership positions.
“I think that we need to see more Latinos in positions of authority in various professions, so that, just like any other group, the kids that are growing up can aspire and strive to be something and they can see people like them as role models. Now Latinos are certainly everywhere, but I want those numbers to improve. I do think we’re lagging in terms of our representation and leadership positions locally and at the state level.”
That is why Logan thinks the Progreso Latino Fund is so important.
“When you pull together the strengths of individuals collectively you can get a lot more done and I think that is an excellent way to jump start and have a bigger impact on the community that we are trying to help and support.”