Legislature Elects New Member and Re-elects Two Members to Board of Regents

Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, Senate and Assembly Education Committee Chairs Shelley Mayer and Michael Benedetto, and Assembly Higher Education Committee Chair Deborah Glick today announced the Legislature’s election of Shino Tanikawa, and the re-election of Susan Mittler and Ruth B. Turner to the New York State Board of Regents.

The Board of Regents is comprised of 17 members elected by the Legislature for five year terms. One member is elected from each of the state’s 13 judicial districts and four members serve at-large.

Majority Leader Stewart-Cousins said, “The new and returning regents have an important role as we continue to work through the hardships the pandemic placed on our education system. I'm extremely confident in their qualifications and diverse skills to help give the best possible education to every child in this state. The Senate Democratic Majority is committed to a system that supports our children from the cradle to college, and I look forward to working with them to ensure that goal. Congratulations to Shino Tanikawaw, Susan W. Mittler, and Ruth B. Turner.”

“After the unprecedented challenges of the last few years, it is more important now than ever that the Board of Regents is made up of experienced and skilled individuals whowill uphold our mission of academic excellence,” said Speaker Heastie. “The new and returning regents elected today have dedicated themselves to serving New York students to ensure that all students have access to a quality education.”

Senator Mayer said, “I am pleased to support these three candidates, including our newest regent, to serve in one of our highest levels of government and ensure all students in New York receive an education that prepares them for the future. Congratulations to Susan Mittler and Ruth B. Turner on their re-election and Shino Tanikawa on her election to the board.”

“With today’s election we have selected three individuals whohave a proven commitment to academic excellence and to ensuring all New York students have access to a quality education. Under their leadership, the Board of Regents can continue its commitment to ensuring that students can achieve success both in and outside the classroom,” said Assemblymember Benedetto.

“Today’s regents election reaffirms New York’s commitment to improving our education system and educational institutions to better serve New York students,” said Assemblymember Glick. “The regents elected today share our long standing commitment to ensure that young people in our state receive a quality education to put them on a path to success.”

Shino Tanikawa (1st Judicial District) began advocating for education in the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) of her daughter’s elementary school. Since then, she served on the Community Education Council District 2 for over 12 years and currently serves on the Citywide Council on High Schools as the public advocate appointee. Tanikawa is also a founding member and co-chair of the Education Council Consortium.

Susan W. Mittler (6th Judicial District) has been an educator in New York State for over 35 years. During her career she was elected president of the Ithaca Teachers Association for nine consecutive two year terms. She was appointed to the New York State Professional Standards and Practices Board from 2005 to 2013, serving as chairperson of the Subcommittee for Professional Standards. During this time, Mittler focused on developing authentic and valid assessments of educators and students. Throughout her career she was an active member of the New York State PTA on the local, district and state levels addressing legislation, diversity and substance abuse. Regent Mittler was first elected to the Board of regents in 2017.

Ruth B. Turner (7th Judicial District) has worked as a licensed clinical social worker for over 24 years. She served in the Rochester City School District for over 13 years as a school social worker, executive director of Student Support Services, and most recently as chief of Student Support Services and Social Emotional Learning. Turner is committed to the intersection between social work, social welfare and education, and as an educator believes in the principles of restorative practices, equity, diversity and inclusion. Regent Turner was first elected to the Board of Regents in 2021.