In 2014 Janet Yellen became the first female chair of the Federal Reserve, responsible for decisions that shape the US economy on every level. After graduating from Pembroke College (now Brown University) in 1967, Yellen earned a PhD in economics at Yale University, the only woman in her class. She went on to teach at Harvard for five years, and from 1977–1978 had her first experience with the Federal Reserve as an economist for its board of governors. She then taught at the London School of Economics for two years before joining the faculty at the University of California at Berkeley in 1980, where she continued to teach until 2006, when she became professor emerita. Yellen spent three years as a member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors from 1994–1997 before becoming chair of Bill Clinton’s Council of Economic Advisors for two years. From 2004–2010 she served as president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, then became vice-chair of the Federal Reserve Board for four years before her appointment as chair in 2014. As Fed chair, Yellen has focused on reducing unemployment and maintaining Wall Street regulation. Although her current term as chair will end in 2018, she will remain on the Federal Reserve’s board of governors until 2024.
How to cite this page
Jewish Women's Archive. "Janet Yellen." (Viewed on May 10, 2021) <https://jwa.org/people/yellen-janet>.