The Arc Remembers Former Board Member and State Senate President Carmen Orechio

February 28th, 2018

Carmen Orechio, 91 of Nutley, was a life-long advocate for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) and their families.  He was elected as the Mayor of Nutley, home of The Arc’s Special Young Adults Day Program, in 1972 and served three terms.  In 1973 he was elected to the state senate, climbing the ranks as Majority Leader in 1981 and Senate President in 1982.  In addition to his legislative work, Senator Orechio served on The Arc of Essex County’s Board of Directors and Advisory Board for more than 25 years.

Senator Orechio was instrumental in the evolution of community housing for individuals with I/DD, championing legislation in 1978 that would ease restrictions on the establishment of group homes.  As a result of his efforts, The Arc of Essex County grew its housing opportunities from just one group home in 1976 to more than 25 group homes, supervised apartments, and supportive living properties today.  The Arc of Essex County expresses its admiration of Senator Orechio and its appreciation and condolences to the Orechio family.

If you’d like to make a donation to The Arc of Essex County, in Senator Orechio’s memory, please visit  Please note your donation is in memory of Senator Orechio - an acknowledgement of your tribute will be sent to his family members.