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About Us

The Board of Regents is responsible for the general supervision of all educational activities within the State, presiding over The University of the State of New York (USNY) and the New York State Education Department. One of the Board’s greatest responsibilities is to appoint a Commissioner of Education, who also serves as the President of USNY.

Originally created in 1784, the Board of Regents is authorized pursuant to Education Law Sections 201-202. Per Education Law Sections 202(1) and 207, the Board of Regents exists to govern and exercise the corporate powers of the University of the State of New York. The Regents are responsible for determining the State of New York’s educational policies and for establishing rules to carry into effect the laws and policies of the state relating to education.

The Board of Regents must consist of one resident representing each of the twelve (12) judicial districts in New York State, as well as (at least) an additional four (4) members who serve at large. There is no maximum number of members required to serve on the Board of Regents, but there can be no less than fifteen (15) board members at any given time.

Regents are unsalaried and are reimbursed only for travel and related expenses in connection with their official duties. Pursuant to Executive Law § 203-b, expenditures are as follows:

Fiscal Year




2024-2025 (As of 5/09/24)


2025-2026 (Projected)



Becoming a Regent

The New York State Legislature solicits applicants, conducts interviews, and elects individuals to the Board of Regents for five-year, staggered terms that end on April 1.

Section 202 of the Education Law provides that Regents must be elected via a concurrent resolution by both houses of the legislature. If the two houses of the legislature are unable to agree on a concurrent resolution, the legislature is required to meet in a joint session to elect the Regents. Vacancies may be filled in the same manner.

In addition to the general requirements set forth in the Public Officers Law regarding age, citizenship, and disqualification for certain prior felony and/or misdemeanor convictions (see Section 3.1-a.(i)-(ii)), Education Law contains certain qualifications for serving on the Board of Regents. Per Section 202 of the Education Law, a Regent must reside in the particular judicial district for which they have been elected to represent. Furthermore, while serving on the Board of Regents, members are not permitted to also serve as a trustee, president, principal, or any other officer of an institution under the authority of the Board.