Tobias Frere-Jones was born in 1970 in New York, and after receiving his BFA in 1992 from Rhode Island School of Design, he joined Font Bureau Inc, Boston. During his seven years as senior designer, Frere-Jones created many of Font Bureau's best known typefaces, including Interstate, and Poynter Oldstyle and Gothic.
In 1996 he joined the Yale School of Art, where he continues to teach typeface design at the graduate level. In 1999, he left Font Bureau to return to New York, where he began work with Jonathan Hoefler. Under the name Hoefler & Frere-Jones, the two have collaborated on projects for Martha Stewart Living, GQ, Esquire, Nike, Pentagram, Hewlett-Packard, the New York Times Magazine and the Wall Street Journal.
In all, he has designed more than 500 typefaces for retail publication, custom clients and experimental research. He has lectured to designers and students throughout North America, Europe and Australia.
His work has been featured in Communication Arts, ID, Page, Print, Eye, Graphis, Esquire, Time and the New York Times, and is included in the permanent collection of the Victoria & Albert Museum, London. He is currently on the board of the New York chapter of the American Institute of Graphic Arts. In 2006, Frere-Jones became the first American to receive the Gerrit Noordzij Award, presented by the Royal Academy of The Hague in honour of his special contributions to typography.