On February 7, 2007, Thomas P. DiNapoli was sworn in as the 54th Comptroller of the State of New York. Since taking office, Tom has fought to protect taxpayers -- aggressively identifying government waste, holding public and private institutions accountable, and working to restore the public’s trust in the Comptroller’s office.
As Chief Fiscal Officer for New York State, Tom has demonstrated his fierce independence and a strong commitment to reform, standing up to both parties with honest talk about our state’s fiscal challenges. He has also shown an unwavering commitment to the growth, integrity, and non-partisan stewardship of the New York State Common Retirement Fund.
Through his audits and oversight, Tom has targeted more than $2 billion in wasteful government spending – fighting to ensure federal stimulus dollars go to the job-creation measures for which they were intended; cracking down hard on waste, fraud, and abuse of state funding; and giving every New Yorker with an Internet connection unfettered access to how their tax money is spent.
Tom has a long and storied career in public service to New York State. Born in Rockville Center, Tom grew up in a union household. His mother, Adeline, was a civil servant, serving as a records clerk for the county police department. His father, Nick, served his country in World War II. After the war, he worked as a cable splicer for the phone company. For a time, he served as a shop steward for his union.
Tom first gained recognition in 1972, when, at the age of 18, he decided to run for the Mineola Board of Education. Frustrated with the lack of attention students were receiving, he went door-to-door to talk with voters about issues that needed to be addressed. The voters then elected Tom as a trustee to the board, making him the youngest person in New York State’s history to hold public office. He served on the board for 10 years, eventually becoming its president.
Tom attended and received a degree from Hofstra University. Afterward, he went to work as an operator for New York Telephone. He would rise within the company to manage a division of more than 100 people.
Tom also worked as an aide to Assemblywoman May Newburger, and in 1986, he succeeded her as representative of the 16th Assembly District, which covers northwestern Nassau County. Tom served 20 years in the Assembly, and during his tenure he chaired the Environmental Conservation Committee, the Local Governments Committee, and the Governmental Operations Committee. During his legislative career, he fought to restore fiscal responsibility in Nassau County, prevent fraud and mismanagement in school districts, and clean up the State’s water supply.
Tom also served for a time as chairman of the Nassau County Democratic Committee; it was during this period that the party captured the County Legislature for the first time in 80 years.