SUFFOLK COUNTY, NY (December 8, 2015) – Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone announced today the hiring of Theresa Ward as Chief Deputy Commissioner for Economic Development and Planning. Ward has more than 20 years of experience in private and public sector real estate development across the country, which includes serving as a senior policy advisor to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s administration and as deputy commissioner for the New York City Department of City Administrative Services (DCAS).
“I am pleased to have Theresa Ward join our Economic Development team as she will bring a wealth of knowledge to Suffolk County,” said Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. “Theresa’s expertise in serving municipalities across the country as well as her experience in the private sector will be an asset in helping us to grow an innovation economy while making Suffolk County more affordable for families and young people to live in.”
“Theresa is a welcomed addition to the Department of Economic Development and Planning,” said Commissioner Joanne Minieri. “I look forward to working with her as we continue to implement this administration’s economic development initiatives to ensure Suffolk County’s prosperous future.”
In her new role, Ward will work with Commissioner Joanne Minieri in all matters pertaining to economic development, planning, and environmental policies – such as job creation and retention, housing, transportation, sustainability, and assist in administering and implementing the Suffolk county economic development initiatives
Prior to joining Suffolk County, Theresa Ward served as independent consultant to the New York City Department of Education, where she provided real estate strategy for the expansion of universal pre-kindergarten to 70,000 four-year olds.
Ward previously served as Senior Vice President of Real Estate Development at Steiner Studios in Brooklyn, the largest film production studio complex on the East Coast. She was responsible for managing the implementation of the company’s $400 million media campus master plan and studio expansion, including the publicly and privately funded Brooklyn College - Barry R. Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema
In addition, Ward was the Deputy Commissioner and Chief Asset Management Officer for DCAS, where she oversaw a 1,300 employee division that managed 25 million square feet of office and court buildings and over $100 million in construction projects annually. Ward was also recognized for developing the 21st Century Civic Center Plan that consolidated offices and generated nearly $250 million for the city.
Ward served as a senior policy advisor to former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s administration and as an economic development officer in housing with former Baltimore Mayor Martin O’Malley’s administration. Ward has also worked in private sector commercial real estate in Washington D.C., starting her career advising pro football Hall of Fame member, Roger Staubach, at the Staubach Company, on real estate technology issues
Theresa Ward is a Southold resident, and graduated with highest honors from Rutgers University where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Urban Studies and Planning and Certificate in Real Estate Development.