10 Things You Need To Know About Janet Yellen

Updated: December 23, 2020
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In our series “10 You Need To Know About” we detail the need to knows about people, places, and things shaping the world of investing.

In today’s, we are detailing all things Janet Yellen, the definition of #girlboss. Janet Yellen was just nominated as the first woman Secretary of the Treasury by President-Elect Biden (of note, she still needs to be confirmed by the senate). And this is just the lat in a series of firsts in her career.

Looking for a cheat sheet on why Yellen has been kicking butt for decades? Here we go:

1. Yellen was named “class scholar” when she graduated from Hamilton High School in 1963, though someone else was named “most likely to succeed.” Wonder what they are up to today…

2. The title of “class scholar” was pretty prescient: Following college at Brown Yellen received a Ph.D. from Yale. Her dissertation was titled “Employment, Output and Capital Accumulation in an Open Economy: A Disequilibrium Approach” and she was the only woman in her doctoral class.

3. What came next for Yellen? Teaching at Harvard, working as an economist with the Board of Governors for the Federal Reserve System, and then teaching at the London School of Economics and the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley.

4. Yellen’s climb first really began when President Clinton nominated her to be a member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in 1994.

5. She’s long been ahead of the curve: Yellen was one of the first voices to warn of the housing bubble back in 2005.

6. She was also one of the first to determine the US had entered a recession back in 2008. Following Lehman Brothers’ collapse, she became the first Fed official to say the US had entered a recession. “This is not a controversial view,” she said at the time, though she was one of the few top economists saying it.

7. She was nominated as the vice chairwoman of the Federal Reserve in 2010, the second-highest-ranking official in the Fed. “I am strongly committed to pursuing the dual goals that Congress has assigned us: maximum employment and price stability,” Ms. Yellen says after being nominated. “If confirmed, I will work to ensure that policy promotes job creation and keeps inflation in check.”

8. She’s long been a champion of seeing more women in positions of power in the field of economics. When asked about this specifically in 2013, Yellen said that is “something we’re going to see increase over time, and it’s time for that to happen.”

9. Yellen was confirmed by the Senate as the first chairwoman of the Federal Reserve, making her the first woman to lead the country’s central bank in its 100-year history in 2014. She served from 2014 t0 2018, and the rumor goes that President Trump was thinking of re-nominating her but decided against it because of her short stature (she’s 5′ 3″).

10. The night before stepped down as Federal Reserve chair in 2018 she put a series of tough penalties in place for Wells Fargo — including growth restrictions — after a series of scandals from the bank. This is considered one of the biggest pieces of her legacy to date.

Feature Image: Wikipedia