Who Is Sarah Bloom Raskin?
Sarah Bloom Raskin is an American legal scholar, economist, and financial regulator who served as the deputy secretary of the U.S. Department of the Treasury from 2014 to 2017. She previously was nominated by President Barack Obama to serve as a member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in 2010, where she served until 2014. She is widely regarded as an expert on financial regulation and consumer protection issues.
In January 2022, President Joe Biden nominated her to succeed Michael Barr as vice chair for supervision of the Federal Reserve. However, on March 15, 2022, she withdrew her nomination due to opposition from several Republican senators and Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin due to past statements she made about climate regulation. Despite that withdrawal, her name has been floated for several key regulatory roles in the Biden administration.
- Sarah Bloom Raskin is an American economist and financial regulator.
- She was a member of the Federal Reserve Board from 2007 to 2010 and served as deputy secretary of the U.S. Treasury Department from 2014 to 2017.
- Bloom Raskin is widely regarded as an expert on financial regulation and consumer protection issues, including financial reform, money laundering and cybersecurity.
- Bloom Raskin was nominated by Biden to become vice chair for supervision of the Fed, but she withdrew her nomination in March 2022 over her progressive views on climate policy.
Early Life and Education
Sarah Bloom Raskin was born in 1961 in Massachussetts and grew up in Indiana. She graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa with a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics from Amherst College in 1983 and earned her juris doctorate from Harvard Law School in 1986. After graduating from law school, Raskin worked as a banking and finance lawyer in private practice for several years and she served as banking counsel for the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs.
Raskin received an honorary doctorate degree from Muhlenberg College in 2019.
Bloom Raskin's private-sector experience has included serving as managing director at the Promontory Financial Group, general counsel of the WorldWide Retail Exchange, and at the law firms of Arnold & Porter, and Mayer Brown.
From 2007-2010, Bloom Raskin served as commissioner of financial regulation for the state of Maryland. She and her agency were responsible for regulating Maryland’s financial institutions during the height of the Great Recession.
In 2010, President Obama nominated Raskin to serve on the Federal Reserve Board of Governors. She was confirmed by the Senate in September of that year along with fellow nominee Janet Yellen, and served on the board until 2014. During her time at the Fed, Raskin focused on consumer protection, community development, and financial stability issues.
In 2014, President Obama tapped Raskin to serve as the deputy secretary of the U.S. Treasury Department. In this role, she helped lead the department's efforts to implement financial reform, combat money laundering and terrorist financing, and increase cybersecurity efforts in the financial sector.
Following her departure from the Treasury Department in 2017, Bloom Raskin was a distinguished visiting professor at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law.
She was then appointed as a Rubenstein Fellow at Duke University. In this role, she worked closely with faculty members from various departments to work on markets and regulation by managing systemic risks stemming from diverse sources like financial tools, cyber breaches, and climate events. Additionally, she provided guidance and support to both undergraduate and graduate students considering careers in the public sector.
In 2021, she was named the Colin W. Brown Distinguished Professor of the Practice of Law in 2021. She is also a senior fellow in the Duke Center on Risk.
Raskin also has shared her expertise by teaching classes, delivering guest lectures, participating in public events, and leading collaborative research initiatives.
Controversial Fed Appointment
In January 2022, Bloom Raskin was nominated by President Biden to become the vice chair for supervision of the Federal Reserve. However, on March 15, 2022, she decided to withdraw her nomination. This decision was made due to opposition from several Republican senators as well as Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin.
Despite her experience and credentials, Raskin's nomination ran into trouble over her views on climate policy, with Senate Republicans opposing her prior remarks critical of the U.S. fossil fuel industry and her academic research into steering bank lending away from major oil, gas, and coal producers. Raskin cited relentless attacks by special interests for derailing her nomination, and her withdrawal came as the Biden administration and the Fed were dealing with the highest rate of inflation seen in four decades.
Some have speculated that she also received opposition from Republicans because her husband, Congressman Jamie Raskin, was the lead impeachment manager for the second impeachment of President Donald Trump in response to the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.
Bloom Raskin has been married to Jamie Raskin since 1990. Her husband is a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives who has served Maryland's 8th Congressional District since 2017. They have two living children; their son, Thomas, passed away in 2021 at the age of 25 after a long battle with severe depression.
Who Is the Current Vice Chair for Supervision of the Federal Reserve Board?
Michael S. Barr has been the Fed's vice chair of supervision since July 19, 2022.
Who Is the Current Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve Board?
Lael Brainard served as vice chair of the Federal Reserve Board from May 23, 2022, to Feb. 18, 2023. This seat was vacant as of April 2023.
Who Is the Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board?
The Fed chairman is Jerome H. Powell, who has served since Feb. 5, 2018, succeeding Janet Yellen (who is now Treasury Secretary under President Biden).
How Many Governors Are There on the Federal Reserve Board?
There are seven governors on the Federal Reserve Board, led by the chair and the vice chair.
The Bottom Line
Sarah Bloom Raskin is an American economist and financial regulator who served as the deputy secretary of the U.S. Treasury Department from 2014 to 2017. She previously was nominated to serve on the Federal Reserve Board of Governors by President Obama in 2010.
Bloom Raskin withdrew her candidacy for the Federal Reserve Board in March 2022, following opposition from several Republican senators and Democratic Sen. Manchin over her views on climate policy. Despite her experience and credentials, her nomination faced strong criticism over her prior remarks critical of the U.S. fossil fuel industry. In 2023, she was serving as a distinguished professor at Duke University's law school.