Two Trustees Appointed to CUNY Board

Two prominent business and community leaders have been named to CUNY’s Board of Trustees and were confirmed on December 13 by the New York State Senate. Solomon A. (Sam) Sutton, Chief Executive Officer of Accessory Exchange, a company that designs, manufactures and distributes quality handbags and fine leather goods, and President of the Sephardic Community Federation and Vice President of the Education Association for Children in New York State (TEACH NYS), was appointed through June 30, 2011.

Jeffrey Wiesenfeld, a Principal with the firm of Bernstein Global Wealth Management, who has held senior administrative positions in the City, State and federal government and has served on the Board since 1999, was reappointed through June 30, 2013. He was widely praised by legislators during the confirmation process for his role in supporting and advocating the reform and renaissance of CUNY during the past seven years.

In a joint statement, Chairman Benno C. Schmidt and Chancellor Matthew Goldstein strongly commended the Governor and the State Senate: “We very much look forward to both continuing to work with Trustee Wiesenfeld and to welcoming Trustee Sutton to the Board of Trustees.”

Trustee Sutton spoke with great pride during the Senate confirmation process of how members of his family benefited from a CUNY college education and of his dedication to the continued enhancement of the University. He is a graduate of Yeshiva University (Cum Laude) and Yeshiva of Flatbush High School. He is a lifelong resident of Brooklyn.

Trustee Sutton is the President of the Sephardic Community Federation, the umbrella public policy group of the organized Sephardic Jewish community. He has been involved in extensive volunteer and community work, including serving as President of Sephardic Bikur Holim, one of the premier community-based social service organizations in New York State. Trustee Sutton chaired the Board of Education for the Sephardic High School and is a New York City certified foster parent who has opened his home to a dozen foster children, including many with special needs. He is working closely with Yad Vashem, the world-renowned Holocaust remembrance institution on the development of a college preparatory program for young women.

Governor Pataki first appointed Trustee Wiesenfeld to the Board in June 1999. The son of two Holocaust survivors, he attended Bronx High School of Science and Queens College, where he also pursued graduate studies. Trustee Wiesenfeld is a resident of Great Neck.

After serving in the foreign counterintelligence division of the FBI, Mr. Wiesenfeld served as an assistant to Congressman Thomas Manton, Queens Borough President Claire Shulman, and as Chief-of-Staff to Mayor Koch’s Traffic Commissioner. Mr. Wiesenfeld was the New York Metropolitan Area Executive Assistant to United States Senator Alfonse D’Amato and became the Executive Assistant to the Governor.

Mr. Wiesenfeld was the New York City Regional Director of the Empire State Development Corporation in 1999, the State’s economic development agency. He is currently a member of the board of the United Nations Development Corporation and a Commissioner within the Long Island North Shore Heritage Area Planning Commission.

The City University of New York is the nation’s largest urban public university. CUNY is comprised of twenty three institutions: eleven senior colleges, six community colleges, the William E. Macaulay Honors College, the Graduate School and University Center, the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, the CUNY School of Law School at Queens College, the CUNY School of Professional Studies and the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education. The University serves more than 226,000 degree-credit students and 230,000 adult, continuing and professional education students. College Now, the University’s academic enrichment program for 32,500 high school students is offered at CUNY campuses and more than 280 high schools throughout the five boroughs of the City of New York. The University has launched an on-line baccalaureate degree through the School of Professional Studies, and a new Teacher Academy offering free tuition for highly motivated mathematics and science majors who seek teaching careers in the city’s public schools.