Robert C. Holland became a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System on June 11, 1973. He was the first staff member to be elevated to membership on the Board. He served until his resignation on May 15, 1976.
Holland was born in 1925 in Tekamah, Nebraska. He graduated from the University of Nebraska in 1946, following service in the US Army from 1943 to 1945. He earned his bachelor’s degree in finance from the Wharton School of Finance and Commerce of the University of Pennsylvania in 1948. He later obtained a master’s degree and doctorate in economics from the University of Pennsylvania in 1949 and 1959, respectively. He taught money and banking at the Wharton School in 1948 and 1949.
In 1949, Holland joined the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago as a financial economist. He was appointed assistant vice president of Research in 1957 and vice president of Credit and Discount in 1959.
Holland joined the Board of Governors in 1961 and served on the Board’s staff in several capacities. He was adviser in the Division of Research and Statistics (1961–64), associate director of the Division of Research and Statistics (1964–65), adviser to the Board (1965–67), secretary of the Board (1968–71), and executive director from 1971 until his appointment as a governor. He also served as associate economist for the Federal Open Market Committee (1952–66) and as secretary of the FOMC (1966–73).
After leaving the Board of Governors, Holland was the president of the Committee for Economic Development (1976–90), a nonprofit group of business and academic leaders that studies policy issues. In that role, he pushed for improvements in education.
From 1990 to 2005, Holland was a senior fellow at the SEI Center for Advanced Studies in Management at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, focusing on business ethics and workforce diversity.
Holland was an active Lutheran, both locally and nationally. As a member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Washington, DC, he taught Sunday school for eighth graders and led the adult Sunday school for many years. His other memberships included the Cosmos Club.
Holland died in 2013.
Written by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. See disclaimer.