News Release

Gene Sperling, Chief Economic Adviser to President Clinton, Joins Brookings

January 10, 2001

Gene B. Sperling, President Clinton’s national economic adviser and director of the National Economic Council (NEC), will join the Brookings Institution as a guest scholar in the economic, foreign policy, and governmental studies programs on January 22nd.

At Brookings, in addition to overall economic and fiscal issues, Sperling will focus on universal education in the world’s poorest countries, especially Africa. Last April, Sperling led a U.S. delegation to a conference in Dakar, Senegal, where a new international goal of universal education by 2015 was established.

“At an earlier stage of his career, Gene Sperling spent some time at Brookings, so in a sense we’re welcoming him back,” said Michael H. Armacost, president of the Brookings Institution. “I’m pleased that Gene’s work here will focus on promoting education reform, particularly in Africa and other developing countries. Brookings has historically devoted special attention to these issues. They are timely and important.”

As director of the NEC, Sperling coordinated the administration’s economic policy and played a key role in the 1993 and 1997 Deficit Reduction Acts, and the policy of saving the surplus for Social Security and debt reduction.

During President Clinton’s first term, Sperling helped design and pass several of President Clinton’s early initiatives, including: the increase in the Earned Income Tax Credit; the Direct Student Loan Program; Empowerment Zones and the Community Development Financial Institutions program; and the Technology Literacy Initiative. He also helped create the America Reads child literacy initiative.

Sperling was a principal negotiator for the 1997 Balanced Budget Agreement, a principal negotiator with Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers in finalizing the Financial Modernization Bill, and together with United States Trade Representative Charlene Barshefsky, successfully concluded the historic China-WTO agreement in Beijing.

More recently, in addition to continuing coordination of President Clinton’s efforts to institute debt reduction and allocate the budget surplus to Social Security, Sperling coordinated the president’s Medicare reform efforts.

Prior to joining the NEC, Mr. Sperling served as deputy director of economic policy for the 1992 presidential transition and economic policy director of the Clinton-Gore presidential campaign. From 1990 to 1992, he was an economic adviser to Governor Mario Cuomo of New York.

Mr. Sperling graduated from the University of Minnesota and Yale Law School, and attended Wharton Business School. At Yale Law School he was Senior Editor of the Yale Law Journal. He is a native of Ann Arbor, Michigan, where his parents still live.

About Brookings

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