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NEWS from the Office of the New York State Comptroller
Contact: Press Office 518-474-4015


DiNapoli: New York State Ranked First Nationwide in Nonprofit Jobs And Organizations

December 7, 2016

New York state ranked first nationwide in nonprofit jobs and organizations, with nearly 1.3 million employees and more than 31,000 organizations in 2012, according to a report released today by State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. The jobs comprised more than 18 percent of all private sector employment in the state.

“Nonprofits take care of New Yorkers, whether it is providing shelter from the cold, a helpful hand or a voice when they don’t have one,” DiNapoli said. “This report shows nonprofits have a significant impact on our economy through the number of jobs they provide and the wages they pay. Given the ongoing challenges facing many nonprofits in New York, it’s important that we develop a better understanding of this key sector of our economy that delivers vital services.”

DiNapoli’s report focuses on private nonprofits classified as charitable organizations – or 501(c)(3)s under the Internal Revenue Code – using the most recent Bureau of Labor Statistics data made available for the first time earlier this year.

Nonprofit groups in New York showed employment growth of 5.6 percent from 2007 to 2012. The rest of the private sector experienced uneven employment growth over most of the period, including a sharp decline in 2009 which resulted in an overall net loss of jobs. In 2012, when nonprofits paid over $532 billion in wages nationwide, New York nonprofits ranked first in the country, paying nearly $62 billion in total wages.

From 2007 to 2012, the number of nonprofit organizations grew by 2 percent in New York state on an average annual basis versus nearly 3 percent nationwide.

“The Comptroller’s report underscores the importance of the nonprofit sector to the state’s economy, the number of people employed and the wages paid,” said Reg Roster, president & CEO of United Way of New York State. “The human service nonprofits, which United Way helps to support, provide day care services that allow people to go to work, job training that helps to fill skill needs, and other services that help business and the economy.”

"We commend Comptroller DiNapoli for calling attention to the important role that the nonprofit sector plays in our state’s economy,” said Allison Sesso, executive director of Human Services Council of New York. “Workers who deliver human services maximize the potential of all New Yorkers. By investing in this workforce, which is predominately comprised of women and people of color, we advance equity in our state while ensuring the provision of critical services.”

“This report helps us realize how critical the nonprofit is to the economic and social fabric of our state and local communities and the importance of having sound public policies that support their sustainability and good work,” said Doug Sauer, chief executive officer of New York Council of Nonprofits, Inc.

“The UJA-Federation of New York, which supports a network of human service nonprofit agencies in New York City, Westchester and Long Island, applauds State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli, for undertaking this report on the positive economic power of the nonprofit sector in New York state,” said Louisa Chafee, senior vice president for external relations and public policy. “This updated data demonstrates Comptroller DiNapoli’s ongoing commitment to sharing important information on the nonprofit sector’s economic impact.”

The top two categories in 2012 for nonprofits nationally and in New York were in health care and social assistance and in “other services,” which includes religious, civic, and social advocacy groups. These two categories accounted for more than two-thirds of nonprofits nationwide and almost three-quarters of those in New York.

Five Largest Nonprofit Industries in New York, 20121
Industry Number of Establishments Number of Employees Employment as Share of Industry Total Average
Annual Wage
Health Care & Social Assistance  12,870 804,457 61.2% $47,196
Other Services 9,524 100,390 30.0% $37,484
Education 2,946 254,716 81.4% $53,377
Arts & Entertainment 1,506 35,595 24.3% $42,465
Professional Services 910 37,228 6.2% $52,118

1Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics / New York State Department of Labor

While education services – including private colleges and universities – ranked third in number, at 28,236 nationwide and 2,946 in New York, it ranked second for employment and paid the highest average annual wage among the top five categories.

Read the NonProfits report here:

For access to state and local government spending and more than 50,000 state contracts, visit The easy-to-use website was created by DiNapoli to promote openness in government and provide taxpayers with better access to the financial workings of government.