President Obama signed an Executive Order today to establish a President's Advisory Council, charged with building the financial capability of young Americans. The new Council will be led by the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
The creation of this Council underscores the Obama Administration's commitment to helping young people get the skills and knowledge they need to pursue successful careers and contribute to the nation's economy. Experience shows that a sound financial footing early in life is important to building wealth and establishing financial security. This new Council will advise the President and his Administration on ways to improve the financial skills of young Americans so that they can make smart decisions about going to college, using financial products, and even saving for their retirement.
In order to navigate today's economy, it is essential for Americans to develop basic financial skills and knowledge. And like other core skills, financial skills are best cultivated early in life. By starting early, children can learn the difference between wants and needs, the importance and power of saving, and the benefit of managing money carefully.
The President's Advisory Council on Financial Capability for Young Americans will build on the recommendations of the prior President's Advisory Council on Financial Capability, which delivered its final report before sunsetting in January of this year. The previous Council's recommendations centered on the importance of promoting financial education in schools, in the workplace, and in families and communities, and the continued need for research and evaluation about such efforts.
Along with Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and Education Secretary Arne Duncan, the Council will consist of leaders and innovators from the private, public, and nonprofit sectors who have demonstrated a commitment to building the financial capability of young people. Richard Cordray, Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will also be a member of the Council.
Members of the new Council will be named in the coming months and the first public meeting is expected later this year. If you have questions or suggestions for the new Council, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject: "PACFCYA."
Cyrus Amir-Mokri is the Assistant Secretary of Financial Institutions at the U.S. Department of the Treasury.