GLENVILLE — Robert T. Farley, a former chairman of the Schenectady County Legislature, has been hired as the director of government affairs for the New York Insurance Association.
Farley has been a Glenville resident for 30 years. In his new role as director of government affairs he will be responsible for lobbying, analyzing and drafting legislation and providing legal representation, options and guidance to the association.
“It’s always been a love of mine,” Farley said. “Insurance is such a special area, because you’re really helping people, and that’s what my love of government has always been about, even when I was on the local level as chairman of the [Schenectady] County Legislature.”
Farley was a five-time elected member of the Legislature from 1993 to 2011. He was also a trial attorney with the Albany-based law firm, McName, Lochner, Titus and William. In 1996, he became managing partner of his family law firm, Farley and Farley.
Robert Farley is the son of Hugh T. Farley, who served as a sate senator from 1976 until 2016. Robert said that he had never worked directly for his father in government, but he had been able to work with him during his time working for the state Senate.
Robert Farley served as senior counsel for the state Senate for 26 years before retiring in 2021. Prior to his work with the Senate he was the state deputy attorney general and before that he worked as assistant counsel to the state Assembly minority leader.
Farley also is an adjunct law professor at the University at Albany.
Government can either be a “detriment” to people or it can be a “benefit,” Farley said. In his new role, Robert Farley said his goal is to try and make it a benefit.
“I really want to go out there and help people,” he said. “That’s why I ran for public office 25 years ago, that’s why I worked in government my whole career. This is such a nice hybrid, because of being able to work with the government too.”
Farley has been involved in the insurance field throughout his career, he said. As a senior counsel in the state Senate, Farley helped to write the bill that created the Department of Financial Services, which now regulates insurance companies, he said.
“I love insurance, because it helps people,” Farley said. “I’ve seen how insurance companies through the policies that they write, whether that be property and casualty or life insurance or health insurance or any of the products they have out there, can really change people’s lives for the better.”
Farley stepped into his new role at the beginning of the month.
“Robert brings a wealth of experience and enthusiasm to our association team,” NYIA president Ellen Melchionni said in a released statement. “We are excited to have a legislative expert on staff, someone whose career has been heavily immersed in the New York Legislature for years, who can bring a well-rounded perspective to legal and legislative strategies.”