Goolsbee Leaving as Top Economic Adviser

Jackie Calmes
The New York Times

Austan Goolsbee, a longtime adviser to President Obama and the only economist left on his core economic team, plans to leave as chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers by September after a year in the job to return to the University of Chicago.

With the recovery flagging, the White House is eager to name a successor to Mr. Goolsbee this summer and is considering several academic economists, an administration official said on Monday. The job requires Senate confirmation.

“Since I first ran for the U.S. Senate, Austan has been a close friend and one of my most trusted advisers,” Mr. Obama said in a statement late Monday. “Over the past several years, he has helped steer our country out of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, and although there is still much work ahead, his insights and counsel have helped lead us toward an economy that is growing and creating millions of jobs. He is one of America’s great economic thinkers.”

Mr. Goolsbee, a left-of center economist who has advised Mr. Obama since he was a state senator, has been part of the inner circle since the earliest campaign days. He was the chief economic adviser at the Chicago headquarters and would call on outsiders on occasion for expertise.

When Mr. Obama took office, he named Mr. Goolsbee as one of the three members of the Council of Economic Advisers; when the first chairman, Christina Romer, left last year to return to teaching at the University of California at Berkeley, Mr. Obama promoted Mr. Goolsbee to the top chair.

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