INTERNATIONAL

Lisa Cook, first black woman governor of the US central bank  

Photo: RFI

It is definitely the turn of black women to be promoted to important positions in an American government: a black judge on the Supreme Court, a black vice-president, a black spokeswoman, and now the governor of the central bank of the United States is black. And all of this is for a great premiere in the United States!!  

On Tuesday, May 10, the US Senate confirmed the appointment of Lisa Cook as head of the US central bank until January 2024. She thus becomes the first woman, who is also black, to hold this position. 

Despite the opposition of elected Republicans, which prevented senators from reaching the organization of the final confirmation vote, at the end of April, Lisa Cook, chosen by President Joe Biden, was able to obtain the majority of votes, thanks to the vote of the American vice-president, Kamala Harris. With 51 votes for and 50 against, Mrs. Cook is now governor of the Fed, the central bank of the United States.  

His appointment comes as the US central bank has to fight against high inflation, without weighing on economic growth and employment. 

Economic adviser to the administration of Barack Obama and during Joe Biden, Lisa Cook's work as an economist focuses on the damage caused by discrimination and the consequences of economic downturns for the poor.  

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“Dr. Cook understands how economic policy affects all Americans. She knows that workers are the engine of our economic growth and she understands that when everyone participates in our economy, it grows faster and stronger,” Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown said in a statement. 

The one whose beliefs were shaped by her childhood in Milledgeville, Georgia, bears the physical scar of racism under her right eye: she was attacked as a child while attending a school previously reserved for white students. She therefore observes in her work, the consequences of this discrimination, which, according to her, has slowed down the whole of society, and its direct victims. 

Lisa Cook is a professor of economics and international relations at Michigan State University. She is also a graduate in economics from the University of Oxford and holds a doctorate from the University of California at Berkeley. 

She speaks 5 languages including French and Russian and has also worked on Rwanda's recovery from the 1994 genocide. Her supporters believe she will bring a fresh perspective to the central bank. 

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Sam Sarah Devilus
Journalist / Communicator / Bookstagramer.