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Realities Behind the Economic Recovery Plan

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Date and time
Thursday, May 22, 2008

As debate on the recession moves from “if” to “when” to “how long,” The New School’s Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (CEPA) and the New America Foundation invite top economists and business executives to share their perspectives. The discussion centers on the economic and political realities behind the debate on how best to stimulate the economy, including how a major public infrastructure investment might serve as a centerpiece of a longer-term recovery program. Participants include Laura D’Andrea Tyson, professor and former Dean of the Haas School of Business at the University of California at Berkeley; Lawrence Mishel, President of the Economic Policy Institute; Bob Kerrey, president of The New School; Teresa Ghilarducci, the Irene and Bernard L. Schwartz Professor of Economic Policy Analysis at the New School for Social Research; Tom Gallagher, an American politician from the U.S. state of Florida, most recently holding the position of Chief Financial Officer of the State of Florida, and; Heidi Crebo-Rediker, co-director of New America’s Global Strategic Finance Initiative. This event was held at The New School.

Lawrence Mishel came to the Economic Policy Institute in 1987. As EPI's first research director, then as vice president, and now president, he has played a significant role in building EPI's research capabilities and reputation. He has researched, written, and spoken widely on the economy and economic policy as it affects middle- and low-income families. He is principal author of a major research volume, The State of Working America, which provides a comprehensive overview of the U.S. labor market and living standards. A nationally recognized economist, Mishel is frequently called on to testify and provide economic briefings to members of Congress and appears regularly as a commentator on the economy in print and broadcast media. He recently published a paper outlining a plan to stimulate the economy, which was widely adopted by policy makers in Washington and beyond.
Teresa Ghilarducci is the Irene and Bernard L. Schwartz Professor of Economic Policy Analysis at the New School for Social Research. Her 2008 book When I'm Sixty-four: The Plot Against Pensions and the Plan to Save Them (Princeton University Press) investigates how to restore the promise of retirement for all Americans. Her book Labor's Capital: The Economics and Politics of Employer Pensions, MIT Press, won an Association of American Publishers award in 1992. She co-authored Portable Pension Plans for Casual Labor Markets in 1995. Ghilarducci publishes in referred journals and testifies frequently before the US Congress. She is the WURF fellow at the Labor and Worklife Program at Harvard Law School and serves as a public trustee for the Health Care VEBAs for UAW Retirees of General Motors and for the USW retirees for Goodyear and served on the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation's Advisory Board from 1996-2001, and on the Board of Trustees of the State of Indiana Public Employees' Retirement Fund from 1996-2002. Her research has been funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, US Department of Labor, the Ford Foundation, and the Retirement Research Foundation.
Since 2001, Bob Kerrey has been president of The New School, a university founded on strong democratic ideals and daring educational practices, and well-suited for his leadership. Throughout his career in public service, while serving as a governor and U.S. senator from Nebraska during the 1980s and 1990s, Bob Kerrey advocated for increased education spending. He continues to do so, recognizing that democratic life flourishes most when all citizens are properly educated and given every chance to participate in the political process. In his view, the United States has an obligation to work with the rest of the world to expand opportunities for all people. That is why he supports active diplomacy, foreign aid and free trade. Such support led him to serve on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and to become an active member of the 9/11 Commission.
HeidiCrebo-Rediker was the founding Co-Director of the Global Strategic Finance Initiative, a position she held until early 2009 when she accepted a post with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. The Global Strategic Finance Initiative focuses on the relationship between global finance, capital flows, and foreign policy, with a specific emphasis on the role of the U.S. in a multi-polar financial world. Last year, Ms. Crebo-Rediker returned to the US from Europe where she spent over 16 years as a senior investment banker at leading investment banks, including Bear Stearns, Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch. Over her career, she managed businesses ranging from Sovereign, Supranational and Public Sector Banking, European Debt Capital Markets and Emerging Markets Debt Capital Markets. In managing businesses in these markets, she advised and raised capital for governments, government agencies, financial institutions and companies and led many landmark transactions. Her investment banking roles in Emerging Markets focused on Russia and the Former Soviet Union and Central and Eastern Europe. From the earliest days of post-communist transition, Heidi led a wide range of activities to promote markets, privatization and entrepreneurship, and went on to lead many pioneering transactions while based in London, Moscow and Sakhalin Island. Ms. Crebo-Rediker was named one of the "Top 25 Women in Business" by The Wall Street Journal Europe and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House). A graduate of Dartmouth College and the London School of Economics, her views on financial and economic matters have been carried in many forums, including CNN, The Wall Street Journal, The National Interest, Forbes and The Financial News, and elsewhere.
Tom Gallagher is an American politician from the US state of Florida. He is a Republican and most recently held the position of Chief Financial Officer of the State of Florida. He lost the primary election against Florida Attorney General Charlie Crist for the Republican nomination in the 2006 gubernatorial race. He was succeeded by Alex Sink in January 2007. Tom Gallagher has served more years as an elected state official than any other individual in Florida history. He has served as a representative from Dade County in the Florida Legislature, Insurance Commissioner and Fire Marshall, Commissioner of Education, Secretary of Professional Regulations, and Chief Financial Officer. Following his retirement as Chief Financial Officer, he has become involved in charitable and business activities including serving on the Board of Advisors of The TRIAM Group.