Joe Luppino-Esposito

Deputy Legal Policy Director |

Joe Luppino-Esposito is deputy legal policy director at Pacific Legal Foundation, where he develops solutions and advocates for reforms for states and the federal government.  

Joe joined PLF to connect with others who want to fight government overreach and defend individual liberty. He’s learned that the risk in pushing hard in service of more liberty for more people is worth the reward. It’s resulted in bills becoming law (Schoolhouse Rock-style), executive orders (SNL’s Schoolhouse Rock-style), and regulations finalized or canceled (no one’s preferred style of government), plus a few vetoes, pardons, and headlines along the way. 

Joe’s focus in the past year has been in restoring the separation of powers when it comes to how governors and other executives issue emergency orders. The constant in Joe’s portfolio is educating and activating citizens and public officials to reform government to work for the people, not against them. 

Prior to PLF, Joe was director of Rule of Law Initiatives at the Due Process Institute, working on bipartisan criminal justice reform in Congress, and was directly involved in the passage of the First Step Act (as in, went-to-the-signing-ceremony-involved). Prior to that, he worked at Right on Crime at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, leading their federal efforts to advance conservative criminal justice principles in Washington. He also previously served as a visiting fellow for overcriminalization at The Heritage Foundation. He has worked on state policy issues, including public pensions, federalism, healthcare, and labor law.  

A New Jersey native, Joe earned a J.D. from Seton Hall University School of Law in Newark and served as editor-in-chief of Circuit Review law journal. He earned a B.A. in government and American studies from the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. 

Joe and his wife, Amanda, plus their two kids and two cats (Reagan and Jack Bauer), live in western Loudoun County, Virginia, which is a key part of Joe’s attempt to be the most outside-the-Beltway “insider” in Washington. He gets overly involved in his community, from his kids’ school, to local politics, to the homeowners association. That sort of thing used to be a badge of overworked honor, but instead it has helped him to realize that he’s getting old.