In memoriam: Charles L. Schultze

It is with deepest sadness that we announce the death of Charles L. Schultze, a beloved Brookings scholar for over 45 years. He died today at his home in Washington, DC. He was 91.

During his illustrious career, Charlie was the Assistant Director of the Bureau of the Budget under President Kennedy. He was subsequently appointed Director of the Bureau of the Budget in 1965 and served as Director under President Johnson until 1968. President Carter appointed him Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers in 1976. Charlie was president of The American Economic Association in 1984.

Charlie started his tenure at Brookings as a Senior Fellow in 1968. In addition, he served as Director of the Economic Studies Program from 1987 to 1990. He has been a senior fellow emeritus since 1996.

He has authored/co-authored dozens of books and articles on economics. He co-edited a series of books with Henry J. Aaron, Alice Rivlin, and other Brookings scholars titled Setting National Priorities: What Can Government Do?  He also wrote the book Memos to the President: A Guide through Macroeconomics for the Busy Policymaker (Brookings, 1992) which continues to be a model for Brookings’s election research and analysis. His other works include, An American Trade Strategy: Options for the 1990’s, co-edited with Brookings Senior fellow Robert Z. Lawrence (Brookings, 1990); American Living Standards: Threats and Challenges, co-edited with Robert Z. Lawrence and Robert E. Litan (Brookings, 1988); Barriers to European Growth: A Transatlantic View, with Robert Z. Lawrence (Brookings, 1987); Economic Choices 1987 (Brookings, 1986); and Other Times, Other Places (Brookings, 1986).

His latest Brookings paper, Clean Energy: Revisiting the Challenges of Industrial Policy, was co-authored with Senior Fellows Adele Morris and Pietro Nivola.  The paper discusses the economic efficiency of the Obama administration’s green energy program.  A video interview of him can be viewed here. He also made a legendary guest appearance on Da Ali G Show with noted comedian/impersonator Sacha Baron Cohen on HBO in 2007.  Charlie was also a frequent contributor to such publications as the American Economic Review, The Brookings Review, and the Brookings Papers on Economic Activity. He was a regular commentator on PBS’s Nightly Business Report for many years.

Charlie is a native of Alexandria, Virginia. He graduated from Gonzaga High School (1942) and received both his bachelor’s (1948) and master’s (1950) degrees in economics from Georgetown University. He was awarded a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Maryland in 1960.

In 1943, Charlie enlisted in the U.S. Army and served for three years in the infantry. He was awarded both a Purple Heart and Bronze Star. Charlie was married to Rita Hertzog for 67 years before her death in 2014. He is survived by his six children, 16 grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren.

There will be a memorial service held at Brookings at 2:00 p.m. on November 4th. In lieu of flowers, donations are requested for Best Buddies.