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Volcker to play key role on econ board

From NBC's Savannah Guthrie
Obama will announce this morning a new economic recovery advisory board, with former Federal Reseve Chairman Paul Volcker to play a key role.

*** UPDATE *** The Obama transition team has made it official. Below is the release, explaining the reasoning behind the formation of the board and brief bios of Volcker and Austan Goolsbee, who will serve as staff director and chief economist of the board. Goolsbee, a University of Chicago professor, was an economics adviser to Obama during the campaign. He will also serve as a member of Obama's Council of Economic Advisers.

The release:
Modeled on the Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board created by President Dwight D. Eisenhower to provide an independent voice on intelligence issues, the new Economic Recovery Advisory Board will be charged with offering independent, nonpartisan information, analysis and advice to the President as he formulates and implements his plans for economic recovery. The Economic Recovery Advisory Board will provide regular briefings to the President, Vice-President and their economic team. The Board will be established initially for a two-year term, after which the President will make a determination on whether to continue its existence based on its continued necessity.

"At this defining moment for our nation, the old ways of thinking and acting just won't do.  They call for us to seek fresh thinking and bold new ideas from the leading minds across America.  And they demand that as we chart a course to economic recovery, we ensure that our government – your government – is held accountable for delivering results. Today, I'm pleased to announce the formation of a new institution to help our economic team accomplish these goals," said President-elect Barack Obama.

Paul Volcker, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve from 1979-87, will serve as Chair of the Board. Volcker is one of the world's foremost economic policy practitioners with vast experience in managing economic crises. He will bring a deep understanding of financial markets and the global nature of this economic crisis to bear in leading the Board's work. Austan Goolsbee will serve as Staff Director and Chief Economist of the Recovery Advisory Board and act as the primary liaison between the Board and the Administration. The President is also nominating Goolsbee to be one of the three Members of his Council of Economic Advisers.

Members of the Board will be drawn from among distinguished citizens outside the government who are qualified on the basis of achievement, experience, independence, and integrity. The Board will bring a diverse set of perspectives and voices from different parts of the country and different sectors of the economy to bear in the formulation and evaluation of economic policy. Additional members will be announced in the future.

The Board will meet regularly and provide advice directly to the President on the design, implementation, and evaluation of programs to jump-start economic growth, create jobs, raise wages and living standards, address the housing crisis and stabilize financial markets. The Board will also focus on how the response to the short-run economic crisis is laying the groundwork for the reforms necessary for longer-run prosperity.

Bios, per the transition team:
Paul Volcker, Chair of the President's Economic Recovery Advisory Board
Paul Volcker has served under five presidents of both parties in a life committed to public service. He was chairman of the Board of Governors of the U.S. Federal Reserve System from 1979 to 1987. Prior to that he served as President of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and the Undersecretary of the Treasury for Monetary Affairs. He is professor emeritus of international economic policy at Princeton University and has served as chairman of the board of trustees of the International Accounting Standards Committee and of the Independent Inquiry Committee for the United Nations Oil-for-Food Program and Chairman of the Board of the Group of Thirty.

Austan Goolsbee, Staff Director and Chief Economist of the President's Economic Recovery Advisory Board & Member of the Council of Economic Advisers
Austan Goolsbee is the Robert P. Gwinn Professor of Economics at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business where he has taught since 1995. He is also a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and the American Bar Foundation. Goolsbee, a Fulbright Scholar and Sloan Fellow, co-directs the Chicago Booth Initiative on Global Markets and formerly served as lead editor for the Journal of Law and Economics. He has been a key economic adviser to the President-elect since 2004.