US Senate Appoints First Black Woman, Lisa Cook To Serve On Federal Reserve Board

The US Senate on Tuesday confirmed Lisa Cook to serve on the Federal Reserve’s board of governors, making her the first black woman to hold the position in the central bank’s 109-year history.

All 50 Democrats in the upper chamber of Congress voted in favour of Cook, a professor of economics at Michigan State University.

Vice-president Kamala Harris cast the tiebreaking vote after Republicans voted unanimously against her appointment.

Cook, who formerly worked as a staff economist on the White House Council of Economic Advisers during the administration of former president Barack Obama, will serve a two-year term expiring January 2024.

“She will bring an invaluable perspective while implementing the Federal Reserve’s dual mandate and protecting its independence,” said Sherrod Brown, Democratic chair of the powerful Senate banking committee that oversaw the nomination process.

All Republicans opposed Cook, with several complaining that she is not qualified for the position, despite having a doctorate in economics and being a professor at Michigan State University.
“Professor Cook has no proven expertise in monetary economics at all, much less fighting inflation,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, said before the vote.
In her confirmation hearing, Cook said she will bring “diverse perspectives” to the Fed that will allow it to better carry out its mission of fighting inflation and keeping unemployment low.

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