Menendez praises nomination of 1st Hispanic to serve on Federal Reserve board of governors

U.S. Sen. Bob Menedez applauded the nomination of Adriana Kugler for a seat on the Federal Reserve board of governors, a move that, if confirmed by the Senate, would make Kugler the first Hispanic to serve on the prestigious board in its 109-year history.

Kugler, an economist with a background in labor economics who has Colombian heritage and is the U.S. executive director of the World Bank, was nominated by President Joe Biden to fill the Fed’s only remaining open governor position on its seven-member board.

Biden also nominated Philip Jefferson, a current governor, to be vice chair of the central bank. If confirmed, Jefferson would be the first Black to hold that position.

“For years, I have been a fierce advocate for greater diversity and inclusion in every industry and across the federal government — including at the Federal Reserve,” Menendez (D-N.J.) said. “I have fought to ensure that institutions like the Federal Reserve better reflect America with the goal of effectuating policies to encourage broad based economic growth for all communities.

“By elevating Philip Jefferson to serve as vice chair, renominating Lisa Cook to the board of governors and nominating Adriana Kugler as the first Hispanic to ever serve on the board of governors, President Biden is signaling that the hopes and dreams of Black and Latino Americans are central to the promise of America. Simply put, we are witnessing history unfold in real time.”

The nomination of a Hispanic appears to be long overdue.

The Hispanic community in the country — more than 62 million — makes up at least 20% of the U.S. And Hispanics in the U.S. account for $2.8 trillion of Gross Domestic Product, which is higher than all but four other countries.

These stats are not lost on Menendez.

“With (Friday’s) announcement, we are ushering in a new chapter at the Federal Reserve, which for 109 years has never had Latinos or Latinas in the upper echelons of its leadership,” he said. “We are finally giving Latinos, all 62 million of us who call this country home, a seat at the table where the most consequential decisions on monetary policy are made, and I, for one, will make it my personal mission to help ensure swift confirmations for Jefferson, Cook and Kugler.”