About Matthew T. Crosson
A native of Wilton, Connecticut, Matthew T. Crosson graduated from Georgetown University (BA) and Fordham University School of Law (JD). He received honorary doctor of law degrees from Dowling College and from St. Joseph’s College.Matt Crosson began his law career in 1974 as an assistant district attorney in the New York County District Attorney’s Office, where he served until 1984 when he became deputy chief of the Frauds Bureau. He investigated and brought to trial complex cases of banking fraud, embezzlement, securities fraud, and international arms trafficking. He also created a consortium of multistate law enforcement organizations that is now known as the National White Collar Crime Center. In 1983, Crosson became assistant counsel to Governor Mario M. Cuomo, where he was responsible for legislation and other matters relating to the justice system.
In 1985 he was appointed deputy chief administrator for Management Support of the New York State Unified Court System, responsible for day-to-day operations of the courts statewide. Crosson served as chief administrator of the New York State Unified Court System from 1989 to 1993. He also served as a commissioner of the New York State Probation Commission and chairman of the Court Facilities Capital Review Board, which supervised the design, financing and construction of courthouses around the state. The Court Facilities Act of 1987, which Crosson conceived and authored, has led New York to create the one of the largest justice-related construction program in the nation.
In 1993 he was appointed president of the Long Island Association (LIA), the principal business and civic organization of the Long Island region. At the time of his departure, the LIA nearly doubled the number of members under his leadership, with a total membership of 5,200 companies and organizations. While at the LIA, Crosson created and launched many successful projects and initiatives. These programs focused on serving and growing all sizes of business and improving the systems that affect job growth and quality of life, including projects that increased growth in the technology industry, enhanced workforce development, increased affordable housing and improved the relationship between business and education.
Crosson’s legacy at the LIA includes his role in bringing some of the world’s most distinguished luminaries and public figures to Long Island to the annual LIA luncheon – a venue that has remained one of the most popular public affairs forums on Long Island. He arranged and hosted an historic joint appearance by former Presidents George W. Bush and George H.W. Bush; Great Britain’s former Prime Minister Tony Blair; political correspondents and pundits Tim Russert, James Carville and Sean Hannity; and many others.
In addition to his role with the LIA, Crosson served as president of the LIA Health Alliance, a regional health insurance purchasing plan for small businesses. He also held board appointments at WNET/Thirteen, WLIW/21 (Public Broadcasting), Long Island’s United Way, the Committee for Modern Courts, the Long Island Housing Partnership, Dowling College, the Long Island High Technology Incubator, the Long Island Works Coalition, the Theodore Roosevelt Council of the Boy Scouts of America, the museums at Mitchel Field, and several other not-for-profit corporations.
Crosson’s public service and volunteerism was prominent throughout his career. He chaired the Long Island Golf Classic (PGA Champions Tour), the Corporate Council of the Nature Conservancy, the Touro Law School Board of Visitors, and the advisory boards of several public and private organizations. He also served for several years as the Long Island Blood Services Business chairman, and was a member of the Governor’s Task Force on Worker’s Compensation, the Assembly Speaker’s Task Force on Health Care, the Lieutenant Governor’s Advisory Council for Educational Excellence, the Suffolk County Blue Ribbon Health Panel, and the State Education Department’s Blue Ribbon Panel on School Leadership.
One of the highlights of Crosson’s career included a role as host of the former weekly news magazine program “The Cutting Edge,” which was broadcast throughout the tri-state region on then WLNY-TV (now the CBS Long Island affiliate). The program was selected by the New York State Broadcasters Association as Best Public Affairs Program Series. He also co-hosted the weekly newsmaker interview program “News 55 Focus” on the same station.
Crosson took over as President and CEO of the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce in April 2010. And though he died just nine months after undertaking this new challenge, associates say he still managed to make a difference in the area's business community. His vision and leadership led to the chamber's distribution of 250,000 Chamber Membership Rewards Cards to encourage the support of local businesses, according to Kristin McMillan, chairman of the Chamber's Board of Trustees. During his brief tenure, Crosson launched the “Viva Las Business initiative,” including a small business toolkit to help businesses survive the recession and drive more customers to their door. He also started the Chamber’s policy committees to help members engage in public policy discussions on issues important to Southern Nevada.
Matt’s widow, Elaine Crosson, Esq., and their son Daniel, 14, reside in Huntington, New York. Elaine serves as Vice President for External Relations at Stony Brook University.
Excerpt from Newsday Editorial On Crosson’s tenure at the LIA:
“One of the first things he did after taking over the Long Island Association in 1993 was to organize a summit of government, community and business leaders to identify the most crucial problems facing the region – with a mandate to come up with real solutions.
Most people would have rested on their laurels in just having produced such a momentous and significant document [the Long Island Action Plan].
Not Matt Crosson. He pushed on to create real initiatives that helped to expand technology on Long Island and preserve East End farmland, and championed affordable housing legislation. He used his vast and diverse relationships to forge coalitions between businesses and educators, civic associations and governments, and environmentalists and developers. Crosson discovered early on a very simple truth that eludes too many in positions of leadership: Nothing gets done without cooperation and with it, anything is possible.”