Ferguson Resigns From Federal Reserve Post - Black Enterprise
Black Enterprise Magazine September/October 2018 Issue

Roger W. Ferguson Jr., 54, vice chairman of the Federal Reserve Board and the highest ranking African American ever to serve on its board of governors, resigned in April.

Ferguson joined the board in 1997 and was reappointed in 2001 to a full term ending Jan. 31, 2014. He had been vice chairman since 1999.

“Roger Ferguson was one of the most outstanding vice chairman that the board has ever seen,” says Andrew F. Brimmer, the first African American governor at the Federal Reserve Board.

With new Chairman Ben Bernanke successfully taking the reins from former Chairman Alan Greenspan, Ferguson decided it was the right time to resign. “Considering the stability of the Federal Reserve and the country, I resigned knowing that the transition from Chairman Greenspan to Chairman Bernanke was in solid shape,” he says. “With a sense of confidence that I’ve achieved reasonable success as vice chairman, I felt I could comfortably move on.”

Some thought that Ferguson, an experienced board member who holds three degrees from Harvard, was next in line to succeed Greenspan. “Ferguson was in the running for chairman, but he wasn’t Bush’s man,” says Mark Vitner, director and senior economist at Wachovia Corp. Ferguson’s departure creates a central banking body where all seven members are Bush appointees.

“I had no expectation that I might become the Fed chairman,” says Ferguson. “I am honored that I was mentioned by some and thought to be qualified, but I was not waiting for the phone to ring.

Ferguson says that during his tenure as vice chairman, he was most proud of leading the board on 9-11 and during the turbulent days that followed, while Greenspan was away in Europe. “His steady voice and sound council helped to assure [the world] that the American financial system would weather that storm,” says Brimmer.

Though Ferguson is restricted from employment at a commercial bank for two years, he has received invitations to work in the public and private sectors and academia. “I’ve been approached to do some interesting things,” he says, “and right now I don’t want to definitively accept or reject any offers.”

Join the Conversation

Marcia Wade Talbert

Marcia is a multimedia content producer focusing on technology at Black Enterprise Magazine. In this capacity she writes and assigns stories to educate readers about social media; digital integration; gadgets, apps, and software for business and professional development; minority tech startups; and careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). In 2012, she received two Salute to Excellence Awards from the National Association of Black Journalists and was recognized by Blacks in Technology (BiT) as one of the Top 10 Black achievers in the tech arena for 2011 at SXSW in Austin, Texas. She has spoken about technology on panels for New York Social Media Week, at The 2012 Rainbow/PUSH Wall Street Summit, as well as at Black Enterprise’s Entrepreneurs Conference and Women of Power Summit. In 2011, SocialWayne.com chose her as one of 28 People of Color Impacting the Social Web, and through crowdsourcing she was listed as one of BlackWeb2.0's/HP's 50 Most Notable African American Tastemakers in Social Media and Technology for 2010. Since taking on the role of Tech editor in September 2010, she has conceived and produced five cover stories on Technology and/or STEM and countless articles, videos, and slideshows online. Before joining BlackEnterprise.com as an interactive general assignment reporter in 2008, she freelanced with Black Enterprise beginning in 2003 while working as the technical editor at Prepared Foods magazine. There she further honed her writing skills and became an authority on food ingredients, including ingredients used in food fortification and enrichment. Meanwhile, her freelancing with Black Enterprise and BlackEnterprise.com helped her stay current on issues pertaining to the financial and business welfare of African Americans. As a general reporter for Black Enterprise she attended and reported on the Democratic and Republican National Conventions, where she interviewed Valerie Jarrett, senior advisor and assistant to President Barack Obama and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder. Marcia has a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture with an emphasis in food science from the University of Minnesota, and a Master of Science degree in journalism from Roosevelt University in Chicago. En route to her secondary degree, she served as the editor-in-chief of the Roosevelt University Torch, a weekly, student-run newspaper. An avid photographer and videographer, Marcia is one of several employees at BLACK ENTERPRISE who interned for the publishing company as a college student. She lives in New Jersey with her husband, a food scientist; her seventeen-month-old daughter; and “The Cat”, but still considers Chicago home.

MORE ON BlackEnterprise.com