William G. Gale

The Arjay and Frances Fearing Miller Chair in Federal Economic Policy, Senior Fellow – Economic Studies, Director – Retirement Security Project, Co-Director – Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center

William Gale is the Arjay and Frances Miller Chair in Federal Economic Policy and a senior fellow in the Economic Studies program at the Brookings Institution. His research focuses on tax policy, fiscal policy, and saving behavior. He is co-founder and co-director of the Tax Policy Center, a joint venture of the Brookings Institution and the Urban Institute. He is also director of the Retirement Security Project.

Gale is the author of Fiscal Therapy: Curing America’s Debt Addiction and Investing in the Future (Oxford University Press, 2019). He is also the co-editor of several books, including most recently Wealth After Work:  Innovative Reforms to Expand Retirement Security (Brookings 2021); as well other volumes on retirement saving, the estate tax, and fundamental tax reform.

He has published research in top scholarly journals, including the American Economic Review, Journal of Political Economy, and Quarterly Journal of Economics. In 2007, a paper he co-authored received the TIAA-CREF Paul A. Samuelson Award Certificate of Excellence.

He has written extensively in policy-related publications and newspapers, including op-eds in CNN, the Financial Times, Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post.

He served as President of the National Tax Association from 2019 to 2020 and as vice president of Brookings and director of the Economic Studies program from 2006 to 2009. Prior to joining Brookings in 1992, he was an assistant professor in the Department of Economics at the University of California, Los Angeles, and a senior economist for the Council of Economic Advisers under President George H.W. Bush.

Gale attended Duke University and the London School of Economics and received his Ph.D. from Stanford University in 1987. He lives in Fairfax, Virginia, where he serves as President of the Pozez Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia. As a person who stutters, he also serves on the Board of Myspeech. An avid tennis player, Gale is married to Diane Lim and is the father of two grown children and the step-father of four.

  • Areas of Expertise

    • Budget and Fiscal Policy
    • Public and Private Pensions
    • Saving Behavior
    • Tax Policy
  • Past Positions

    • Vice President and Director of the Economic Studies Program, Brookings (2006-2009)
    • Joseph A. Pechman Fellow, Brookings (1992-2001)
    • Senior Staff Economist, President's Council of Economic Advisers (1991-92)
    • Assistant Professor, Department of Economics, University of California, Los Angeles (1987-91)
  • Education

    • Ph.D., Stanford University, 1987
    • B.A., Duke University, 1981
    • London School of Economics, 1980
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