The Treasury Department announced that former JPMorgan Chase executive Janis Bowdler will serve as its inaugural counselor for racial equity.
Bowdler will work to coordinate the Treasury Department’s goals to advance racial equity through public engagement, according to a news release Monday.
“The pandemic threw a spotlight on this inequity; people of color were often the first to lose their jobs and businesses,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said. “Treasury must play a central role in ensuring that as our economy recovers from the pandemic, it recovers in a way that addresses the inequalities that existed long before anyone was infected with COVID-19.”
Bowdler launched her career with the Cleveland, Ohio-based Famicos Foundation, a group that works in community development. While there, she helped with developing and fostering housing opportunities in majority-black neighborhoods. She later served as director of economic policy for UnidosUS, a Latino advocacy group formerly known as National Council of La Raza.
She also served as the head of JPMorgan Chase’s philanthropic arm, where she played “a critical role” in crafting the firm’s long-term $30 billion racial equity commitment.
“I could not be more humbled by the historic opportunity to serve as the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s first Counselor for Racial Equity,” Bowdler said. “I have spent my entire career working in solidarity with Black, Latinx, AAPI, Native communities, and other communities of color to dismantle the structural and institutional racism that perpetuates the racial wealth divide."
In a blog post Monday, Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo said that one of Bowdler’s first goals will be to form a “Racial Equity Advisory Committee” at the Treasury Department to provide counsel on how to help underserved communities.
Her duties will also include “improving access to the Child Tax Credit and understanding how Community Development Financial Institutions and Minority Depository Institutions can transform access to capital in communities of color,” Adeyemo said.
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Original Author: Zachary Halaschak
Original Location: Treasury names former JPMorgan executive to new 'racial equity' position