Roger Tilles, longtime patron of the arts and education is the visionary behind the founding of Long Island Arts Alliance, which brings together the cultural institutions of Long Island. He now serves as Chair of the Advisory Board. He is known as a vocal advocate for arts education on Long Island and across America. In April 2005, he was elected the Regent representing Long Island on the New York State Board of Regents where he presently serves as the chair of the Cultural Education Committee, responsible for oversight of libraries, museums, public television and the New York State Museum, State Library and State Archives.
Mr. Tilles graduated in 1968 from Amherst College with a Bachelor of Arts degree, received New York City Professional Certification through C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University and graduated from the University of Michigan College of Law in 1971. He became Director of Law and Legislation for the Michigan Department of Education, was elected to the Michigan State Board of Education, and in 1975, he became the Executive Secretary to the Speaker of the Michigan House of Representatives. During this time in Michigan he taught education and the law at University of Michigan, Michigan State, Eastern Michigan and Central Michigan Universities’ Schools of Education. He was also the counsel to the Michigan Teacher Tenure Commission as well as a Special Education Hearing Officer. After being a candidate for U.S. Congress, he opened his own law practice in Washington, D.C. in 1978, until his return to Long Island in 1983 where he is a Director of Tilles Investment Companies. He is a member of the New York, D.C. and Michigan Bar Association.
He was Chair and a founding member of the Association for a Better Long Island, is the former Chair of the Long Island Regional Planning Board, served as Chair of the Long Island University Board of Trustees, served on the Boards of WNET/Channel 13 and WLIW/Channel 21 and has been Executive Vice Chairman of the Tilles Center For The Performing Arts, in addition to serving on the Board and Executive Board of the Long Island Association. He is, as well, a member of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards