Craig M. Haba ’91

Craig M. Haba ’91

Campus Memories and Professional Life

A bit of a renaissance man, Trumbull, Conn., native Craig Haba ’91, P’21 arrived at Fairfield after a brief stint at Bentley College.

“It just didn’t have the right feel. I should have just come to Fairfield in the first place,” he said.

Once on campus, Haba — an economics major — jumped into student life with a passion, serving the Fairfield University Student Association (FUSA) as vice president of student life, and helped spearhead the first mission trips to Ecuador and Haiti with Campus Ministry. “It was such a meaningful experience to be involved on campus,” Haba said, reflecting on how his Fairfield education has affected his life and career.

“As a part of FUSA, I chaired the academic committee early on and was a liaison with the faculty, worked on redesigning the registration system, curriculum and often interacted with students, faculty and even the Board of Trustees at a young age.”

Haba, who lived at the beach always stayed busy, working off-campus to support himself as a bank teller and an emergency medical technician for the towns of Trumbull and Fairfield.

When it came time to look for a job in 1991, Haba had his heart set on the General Electric (GE) Company’s Financial Management Program. But when he first interviewed and didn’t get the job, he turned to those who knew him best on the Fairfield faculty.

“Dr. Robert Kelly, Dr. Philip Lane and Dr. Laurence Miners in the Department of Economics helped to make my experience special. At that time, I was encouraged to apply for doctorate programs in economics, which I did,” Haba said. Haba was accepted into several graduate programs and just three weeks before he was about to begin one, he received a call from GE. They offered him the job.

“Conflicted on my options, I drove right back to campus after one more GE interview and met with Fr. Aloysius Kelley and Dr. Lane, who both encouraged me to follow the GE opportunity. So, that’s where I went,” Haba said, explaining that Jim Fitzpatrick, assistant vice president for administration and student affairs, and George Diffley, now special assistant to the president, also were and have remained important influencers in his life.

Haba thrived at GE for 12 years and served as vice president of Finance before leading the sale of his division to a private equity firm in 2003. He stayed in private equity for some time after leaving GE, then took on leadership roles at Tyco International and U.S. Surgical, now a division of Medtronic. Today, as Partner and Wealth Management Advisor of the Wellesley Group based outside Boston, MA, Haba runs his own financial planning firm guiding executives and professionals across the medical device and healthcare industry.

On Giving Back and Family Ties

Haba and his wife LeAnne were married at the Chapel of St. Ignatius Loyola on campus and had their children baptized by Rev. Thomas Regan, S.J., his Loyola Hall resident Jesuit and close confidant. Haba’s sister-in-law Kristin Myers also attended Fairfield and his daughter Olivia will be welcomed into the Fairfield tradition this coming fall as a first-year nursing student.

An active campus volunteer and Fairfield Legacy Association member, for many years, Haba has served on the Trustees Advisory Council, the Fairfield Awards Dinner Committee and is currently a member of the Marion Peckham Egan School of Nursing and Health Studies Advisory Board. “I was asked to join the Egan School Advisory Board to bring a business perspective to the group,” Haba said, explaining that his sister Michelle Haba Rosiak, an O.R. nurse at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Bridgeport, CT earned nursing certificates at Fairfield and inspired his involvement.

Haba has organized numerous events for nursing students based on his experience and work at U.S. Surgical. He has also engaged in market research and was a proponent for doctoral programs as well as the new Egan School of Nursing and Health Studies building.

“The Egan School develops outstanding nursing leaders who are trained in data-based decision making. I’m always amazed by the maturity, confidence and interpersonal skills of our nursing students,” he said. “A good portion of my life has been within or touching healthcare and the field needs Fairfield graduates.”

Stagiving Day

This past March for Stagiving Day, Haba and his family led by example and gave $10,000 as a challenge grant for the Egan School. “We wanted to leverage that challenge to encourage folks to give back and to participate,” Haba said. Thanks to Haba and generous support from alumni, families, friends, parents, faculty and staff, Stagiving Day totaled 2,375 donors and $1,348,640.