Anthony M. Solomon became president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York on April 1, 1980, at the age of sixty, capping a long career of service in both the public and private sector.
Solomon was born in Arlington, New Jersey, in 1919. He graduated from the University of Chicago with a bachelor's degree in economics in 1941, and soon afterwards he joined the American financial mission to Iran. He entered Harvard University in 1946, and he received a master's degree in economics and public administration in 1948.
Solomon spent the next ten years in Mexico, first as a publisher and then as head of a Mexican food company. In 1961, he returned to Harvard University as a member of the faculty. He returned to government service two years later and was eventually appointed deputy assistant secretary of state for Latin America. From 1965 to 1969, Solomon was the assistant secretary of state for economic affairs and a member of President Johnson's Task Force on the Reform of the International Monetary System.
In 1969, Solomon established the International Investment Corp. for Yugoslavia at the request of Robert McNamara, president of the World Bank. He departed that position to become an adviser to the chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee, and assisted in the development of trade legislation. Solomon served as undersecretary of the treasury for monetary affairs from March 1977 to March 1980.
Solomon brought all of this vast and unique experience with him when the New York Fed's board of directors appointed him to be the sixth president of the Bank. The year 1980 was turbulent for financial markets as the United States economy skidded into an economic recession. In addition, the Iran hostage situation continued throughout the same year, and Solomon's prior experience in that region helped him to lead the Bank through this turbulent time in our nation's history.
Solomon stepped down as president of the New York Fed on December 31, 1984, upon reaching the mandatory retirement age of sixty-five. His legacy includes serving as an international economic adviser to three U.S. presidents. Solomon passed away in 2008 at his home in New York. He was eighty-eight years old.
Written by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. See disclaimer.