WILLIAM C. THOMPSON, JR., B.A., was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo on June 15, 2016 as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York. His term ends June 2022.
Mr. Thompson is a dedicated advocate for innovation, diversity and progress in the public and private sectors. He champions transformational policy for positive change, demanding accountability, transparency and integrity. Mr. Thompson’s legacy includes driving positive, innovative change in New York City education and economic development, protecting the City’s financial integrity and fighting to protect the interests of millions.
Currently, Mr. Thompson is a Partner at Siebert Brandford Shank & Co., a full service investment firm, serving as Chief Administrative Officer since April 2010. Siebert Brandford Shank has managed over $1 trillion of municipal bonds in more than 4,000 transactions for the funding of education, housing, health services, transportation, utilities, capital facilities, economic development, redevelopment and general infrastructure projects. The firm has ranked as the #1 M/WBE (Minority and Women-Owned Business) firm in public finance from 1998 to 2015 and was the first M/WBE firm to be ranked in the top 10 for public finance senior managed transactions.
Mr. Thompson was elected to two consecutive, four-year terms as Comptroller of the City of New York in 2002. As the NYC Comptroller, he led a team of 720 employees, managed a $66 million annual operating budget, $36.5 million capital budget, and the 5th largest billion-dollar pension fund in the United States, which was rated among the top 20 in the world. Mr. Thompson safeguarded multi-billion dollar portfolios and protected the assets and interests of millions of New Yorkers during one of the most challenging economic periods in history.
Prior to being elected New York City Comptroller, Mr. Thompson was appointed to the New York City Board of Education where he served five terms as President of the nation’s largest school system with more than 130,000 employees and an annual budget of nearly $12 billion. As President, Mr. Thompson led policy development and implementation for a public school system with 1.1 million public school children. In particular, Mr. Thompson worked closely with CUNY officials to expand the University’s College Now program, which enables public high school students to take college courses. College Now, which enrolled 449 students from a few Brooklyn high schools when it started in fall 1984, currently serves more than 20,000 students and partners with 400 high schools.
In January 2015, Governor Cuomo named Mr. Thompson as Chairman of the New York State Housing Finance Agency and Chairman of the State of New York Mortgage Agency. In 2011, Governor Cuomo selected Mr. Thompson to Chair his M/WBE Task Force. In February 2010, Governor David Paterson named Mr. Thompson to serve as Chairman of the Board of The Hugh L. Carey Battery Park City Authority, a position he held until 2012.
A lifelong New York City resident and a product of its public schools, Mr. Thompson graduated from Tufts University with a B.A. in Political Science. He is a Trustee Emeritus of Tufts University.
Born in Brooklyn, Mr. Thompson resides in Harlem with his wife and three children.
Mr. Thompson serves as Chair of the Executive Committee, the Committee on Audit, and is a member of the Subcommittee on Investment.