Monday, March 27, 2017
Annenberg Presidential Conference Center
1002 George Bush Drive West
College Station, TX
5:00 p.m. Reception
5:30 p.m. Lecture
Robert S. Kaplan
President and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
The Mosbacher Institute for Trade, Economics, and Public Policy hosted Robert S. Kaplan, President and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, on Monday, March 27, 2017 for the final Conversation in Public Policy of the academic year. Bush School Dean Mark Welsh began the evening by welcoming guests and recognizing various A&M officials and the large number of Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas employees in the audience. Dr. Lori Taylor, Director of the Mosbacher Institute, then introduced President Kaplan who joined her on stage for a conversation on Economic Conditions and Monetary Policy.
Not pulling any punches, Dr. Taylor began the conversation by asking President Kaplan to give his assessment of the US economy in recent years and his outlooks for the US economy, the energy industry, and the Texas economy. President Kaplan noted that the Federal Reserve estimates 2 ¼ % growth in US GDP in the coming year, somewhat sluggish, but comparable to the past seven years or so, with consumers having a greater ability spend than they did before the economic crash in 2008. He also foresaw increasing stability in the energy industry and robust growth for Texas. Kaplan added that reforms to investments and the housing market, while at times unpopular, have done much to improve the ability to safeguard and predict future recessions. An overarching theme throughout the conversation that Kaplan returned to frequently were the issues that keep him up at night: an aging work force; a globalized world in which China is shifting from a producer to consumer state; and technology advancements that are outpacing retraining.
Noting the large number of Bush School and Mays School students in attendance, Dr. Taylor turned the conversation to another important aspect of the Federal Reserve, their ability to adjust interest rates and how that affected borrowers like students. President Kaplan stressed that when adjusting interest rates, being patient and gradually raising the rate according to market factors is key. He also highlighted important changes in the US and world economies that make the high economic growth rates of previous eras unsustainable now.
President Kaplan rounded out the Mosbacher Institute hosted conversation by talking briefly on the different types of leadership needed in the private sector compared to the public compared to an academic setting. As an academic who has written numerous books on the topic, Kaplan pointed out the need for buy-in from employees, being knowledgeable on subject matter, and understanding the organization’s structure when making decisions. The crowd of over 450 joined Dr. Taylor in thanking President Kaplan with a large round of applause ending another highly informative Conversation in Public Policy.
L-R: Daron Peschel, Sr. VP, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas; Michael Young, President of Texas A&M University; Dr. Lori Taylor, Director of the Mosbacher Institute; Mark Welsh, Dean of the Bush School
Dr. Lori Taylor and Robert S. Kaplan
Bush School Ambassadors
Robert S. Kaplan, President and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
Robert Steven Kaplan has served as the thirteenth president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas since September 8, 2015. He represents the Eleventh Federal Reserve District on the Federal Open Market Committee in the formulation of U.S. monetary policy and oversees the 1,200 employees of the Dallas Fed.
Kaplan was previously the Martin Marshall Professor of Management Practice and a Senior Associate Dean at Harvard Business School.
He is the author of several books, including What You Really Need to Lead: The Power of Thinking and Acting Like an Owner; What You're Really Meant To Do: A Road Map for Reaching Your Unique Potential; and What to Ask the Person in the Mirror: Critical Questions for Becoming a More Effective Leader and Reaching Your Potential.
Prior to joining Harvard in 2006, Kaplan was vice chairman of The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. with global responsibility for the firm's Investment Banking and Investment Management Divisions. Previously, he served as global co-head of the Investment Banking Division. He was also a member of the firm’s Management Committee and served as co-chairman of the firm’s Partnership Committee and chairman of the Goldman Sachs Pine Street Leadership Program.
During his 23-year career at Goldman Sachs, Kaplan served in various other capacities, including head of the Corporate Finance Department, head of Asia-Pacific Investment Banking as well as head of the high-yield department in Investment Banking. He became a partner in 1990. Upon leaving the firm in 2006, he was given the honorary title of senior director.
He serves as co-chairman of Project A.L.S. and co-chairman of the Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation, a global venture philanthropy firm that invests in developing non-profit enterprises dedicated to addressing social issues. He is also a board member of Harvard Medical School.
Kaplan previously served on the boards of State Street Corporation, Harvard Management Company, Bed Bath & Beyond and Heidrick & Struggles International, Inc. He was also a trustee of the Ford Foundation, founding board chair of the TEAK Fellowship, co-founder and chairman of Indaba Capital Management, LP and chairman of the Investment Advisory Committee at Google, Inc.
Kaplan was appointed by the Governor of Kansas as a member of the Kansas Health Policy Authority Board.
Born and raised in Prairie Village, Kansas, Kaplan received a bachelor of science degree in business administration from the University of Kansas and a master’s degree in business administration from Harvard Business School.