For immediate release
Tuesday, May 10, 2022
Press contact:
Catalina Brennan-Gatica 

With Senate Confirmation Vote, Dr. Lisa Cook Becomes first Black Woman to Serve on the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors

(Washington D.C.)—Today, at 6:30PM ET the U.S. Senate, with a tie breaking vote from Vice President Harris, voted to confirm Dr. Lisa Cook to the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors. Dr. Lisa Cook is the first Black woman to serve on the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors. Formerly at Harvard, she currently serves as a Professor of Economics and International Relations at Michigan State University and previously advised Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama on macroeconomic policies. Action Center on Race & the Economy (ACRE) is celebrating Dr. Cook’s confirmation following their extensive work to secure her nomination and confirmation. 

Today’s historic confirmation is well deserved as Dr. Lisa Cook’s exceptional academic and public service background makes her the best choice for ensuring our economic institutions are servicing the needs of all Americans. In this time of record breaking inflation that hurts working people, especially those of color, we desperately need the leadership of someone like Dr. Cook who will work tirelessly on behalf of all of us, said Vasudha Desikan, Political Director at ACRE.

Dr. Cook brings with her an exceptional academic and research background that will provide valuable perspective to the Federal Reserve.The confirmation of Dr. Lisa Cook is a clear commitment to ensuring the Federal Reserve’s responsibility to be more conscious of race in its work. This commitment, to examine the role of race in the nation’s financial systems, has been voiced in previous statements by the Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell. 

Previously Dr. Cook has explored the extensive damage racism has caused for all of American society. She has authored groundbreaking research on the role violence against Black communities has played in stalling economic progress from the 1870s to the 1940s, crippling the ability of Black Americans to build up the economies within their communities. Dr. Cook’s research has also examined contemporary issues including how the underrepresentation of Black employees in innovative and STEM fields has hurt the overall economy.

Dr. Cook was nominated by the Biden Administration to the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors along with Michael Barr and Philip Jefferson. During her nomination process Dr. Cook received extensive attacks from the American Accountability Foundation, an NGO explicitly committed to preventing the approval of all Biden Administration nominees, and Republicans in Senate Banking. In spite of these malevolent attacks, Dr. Cook will now be able to continue her work in shaping our financial systems to benefit all Americans. 

Action Center on Race & the Economy (ACRE) is a campaign hub for organizations working at the intersection of racial justice and Wall Street accountability.