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Will an openly gay Black man lead the Treasury Department in the Biden Administration?


Dr. Raphael Bostic (Image: Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta)

Dr. Raphael Bostic, 54, is no stranger to being first. As the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, his historic 2017 appointment as the head of the regional Federal Reserve Bank was a departure from the institution’s 106-year-old history, making him the first African-American and openly gay man to lead any of the Federal Reserve Banks. Now it appears that Bostic is on the shortlist for a job in the new Biden Administration.


The New York Times lists Bostic as the top contender to fill the role of Secretary of Treasury, a role that has never been occupied by an African-American. Also on the list are Massachusetts senator and former presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren, Lael Brainard, a member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, Sarah Bloom Raskin, a former deputy Treasury secretary and a former member of the Fed’s Board of Governors, and Janet Y. Ellen, former president of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.


Bostic’s educational background and impressive resume, which also includes serving as a former HUD official in the Obama administration makes him a serious contender among the other economists and career politicians who are being considered for key positions within the U.S. Treasury Department.


Bostic worked at the Federal Reserve Board of Governors from 1995 to 2001, first as an economist and then a senior economist in the monetary and financial studies section. He arrived at the University of Southern California (USC) in 2001 and served as a professor in the School of Policy, Planning, and Development. From 2012 to 2017, Bostic was the Judith and John Bedrosian Chair in Governance and Public Enterprise at the Sol Price School of Public Policy at USC. He graduated from Harvard University in 1987 with a combined major in economics and psychology. Bostic earned his doctorate in economics from Stanford University in 1995, according to his Federal Reserve bio.


During a recent appearance on CBS’s Face The Nation, Bostic reacted to reporting of him being shortlisted to fill the top spot at the Department of Treasury.


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