President's Message

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A substantial amount of research is performed at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. Most of our work is produced in-house by teams of economists and other subject-matter experts, but we also consult outside experts to augment our findings. Our primary purpose for any research we conduct or review is to support the development of our policy positions. Whenever possible, we share what we’ve been learning and thinking about with people and organizations outside the Bank. We provide information in the form of speeches, for example, or in any number of the Cleveland Fed’s publications, including Forefront.

This issue of Forefront features the Bank’s recent collaboration with the University of Kentucky in convening an economics of education workshop. Several of our economists have a focus in education research, and their associations with other researchers help spread their findings while providing feedback for their own work. This feature article aims to give you a taste of the cutting-edge research that is aiding efforts to advance educational attainment across the United States.

In this issue, we also report on the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland’s involvement with the region’s philanthropic networks, an area where our learning is only just beginning. Mary Helen Petrus with the Community Development Department discusses her group’s collaborations with foundations and other grant makers across the Midwest. Grant makers are facing tighter giving budgets in the aftermath of the recession and necessarily have become more innovative and focused in deploying their funds. Where the Cleveland Fed can help is in bringing together foundations and public agencies with mutual interests, as well as discussing our research on topics of interest to them.

This issue also puts a spotlight on a group that ordinarily operates out of the spotlight—the Uniform Law Commission. Researchers with the Cleveland Fed have closely followed the Commission’s recent efforts to propose a uniform legal framework for handling mortgage foreclosure rules across state lines. The importance of getting the details right when considering different state approaches to mortgage foreclosures, for example, may be a crucial ingredient in the housing recovery. Our researchers are providing input to the process as it evolves.

Our featured interview is with Karen Dynan, vice president and co-director of the Economic Studies program at the Brookings Institution. We invited Dynan to talk with Bank researchers about her work in household finance and macroeconomics. I benefited considerably from her visit to the Bank, and I am hopeful you will have the same reaction to our interview with her.

As you’ll see in this issue, in addition to conducting academic research, we spend time talking with educators and policymakers, lawmakers and nonprofit managers, and many more. I always take away something new from these conversations, and invariably their insights provide background for the way I think about Federal Reserve policy. I consider these dialogues an integral part of my job, as they inform my comments around the Federal Open Market Committee table.

The Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland exists to serve the public interest. As much as we want to share what we know with you, we also want to hear from you. Here on our website, you can find many resources and key contact information. Please let us know what you think.

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Meet the Author

Sandra Pianalto

| President and Chief Executive Officer

Sandra Pianalto

Ms. Pianalto has both national and local leadership responsibilities. She participates in the formulation of U.S. monetary policy, and she oversees 950 employees in Cleveland, Cincinnati, and Pittsburgh who conduct economic research, supervise financial institutions, and provide payment services to financial institutions and the U.S. government.

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