Fred W. Thiele, Jr. was born on August 26, 1953 and is a lifelong resident of Sag Harbor, New York where he currently lives with his wife NancyLynn. He has three children, (Michael, Jeffrey and Josephine) and three grandchildren. Mr. Thiele is a 1971 graduate of Pierson High School. He attended Cornell University and is a 1976 graduate of Southampton College of Long Island University. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree, summa cum laude, in Political Science and History. In 1979, he received his law degree from Albany Law School. In 1980, he was admitted to the Bar in the State of New York.
Mr. Thiele began his career in government service in 1975 after he was selected by his college to participate in the New York State Assembly Intern Program. Upon graduation from law school in 1979, Mr. Thiele became counsel to then-Assemblyman John Behan of Montauk. He served in that capacity until 1982.
From 1982–1987, Mr. Thiele was Southampton Town Attorney. During his tenure as Town Attorney he was the town’s chief legal officer and was involved in the implementation of open space and environmental zoning and land preservation programs.
In November 1987, Mr. Thiele was elected to the Suffolk County Legislature. As a Legislator, Mr. Thiele chaired the Energy and Environment Committee and enacted legislation that nominated Peconic Bay and Gardiners Bay for the National Estuary Program.
In November 1991, Mr. Thiele was elected as an Independent to serve as Southampton Town Supervisor. Under his leadership, the Town decreased taxes for three consecutive years, bringing much needed stability to the Town’s finances. He enacted a number of important initiatives including open space preservation, affordable housing, environmental protection, comprehensive long-term planning, economic development and government reform.
In 1995, Mr. Thiele was elected to the New York State Assembly to fill the seat vacated by Assemblyman John Behan. The district includes the Town of East Hampton, the Town of Southampton, the Town of Shelter Island, and the southeastern portion of the Town of Brookhaven.
Mr. Thiele is serving his 13th term in the New York State Assembly. Assemblyman Thiele has numerous accomplishments as a State Assemblyman. He authored legislation which created the Peconic Bay Community Preservation Fund Act (CPF). This groundbreaking legislation authorized the five towns in the Peconic Region to establish dedicated funds, financed by a 2% real estate transfer tax for land preservation and water quality protection. Since its enactment 20 years ago by public referendum, the fund as generated more than $1.4 billion and has resulted in the preservation of more than 10,000 acres of sensitive lands.
Other environmental initiatives have included state funds for improving water quality, Peconic Bay and South Shore Estuary projects, farmland preservation, and state acquisition of critical environmental parcels.
Mr. Thiele has also been very involved in transportation issues including the establishment of the South Fork Commuter Connection, the region’s first multi-modal commuter system providing an alternative to traffic congestion.
Mr. Thiele has also focused on affordable housing. During the 2019 Session, the Legislature passed his bill to permit the Peconic Bay region towns to establish Community Housing Funds, which would provide up to $20 million annually to provide financial assistance and new housing opportunities for local residents.
Mr. Thiele continues his efforts to insure fiscal responsibility at all levels of government. He has supported successful initiative to reduce income taxes and was an original proponent of the STAR program to reduce school taxes.
Mr. Thiele is the Chairman of the Assembly Local Governments Committee and serves as a member of the Assembly Ways and Means Committee, Environmental Conservation Committee, Oversight, Analysis and Investigation Committee, and Transportation Committee. He is also a member of the Assembly Majority Steering Committee.