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Urban Institute Announces New Members of Leadership Team
Len Burman Returns to Direct the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center; Donald Marron, Erika Poethig Appointed to Newly Created Posts
Published: March 20, 2013Availability:
The Urban Institute is adding to its leadership team: Donald Marron, the director of the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center, will become the Institute's first director of economic policy initiatives in June. Len Burman, former director of the Tax Policy Center and currently a professor at Syracuse University, will return to lead the center he co-founded in 2002. Erika Poethig, most recently the acting assistant secretary for policy development and research at the Department of Housing and Urban Development, will fill the newly created position of director of urban policy initiatives.
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March 20, 2013 - Today, the Urban Institute announced the following three appointments:
Donald Marron, Director of Economic Policy Initiatives
"Donald Marron has wide-ranging interests and an unparalleled ability to explain clearly complex economic concepts and analyses," said Sarah Rosen Wartell, president of the Urban Institute. "In his new role, he can design cross-cutting research, drawing upon the breadth of the organization's expertise and analytic tools, to inform high-level policymakers tackling the biggest spending, revenue, and growth issues facing the nation."
Len Burman, Director, Tax Policy Center
"In searching for a successor to Donald, we were thrilled to entice back TPC's very own co-founder, Len Burman," continued Wartell. "Len is an innovator. With the encouragement of former Urban Institute President Robert Reischauer, he imagined that the tax microsimulation model—if maintained at the ready—would allow for timely revenue and distributional analysis of emerging tax policy proposals. This has made TPC indispensable to the media and all those who follow tax debates."
Urban Institute Trustee Erskine Bowles has described TPC as a "national treasure," noting that the Simpson-Bowles Commission recently relied upon the center for assistance in developing the tax elements of its deficit reduction plans. Urban Institute Trustee Greg Mankiw, who recently joined TPC's advisory council, added, "TPC provides some of the crucial inputs necessary so that policy decisions can be based on hard data rather than political rhetoric."
Burman noted, "Working as a scholar at the Maxwell School of Syracuse University for the past four years, I've developed a new appreciation for how TPC's clear, timely, and impartial analysis informs the tax policy debate outside the Beltway. I'm excited about rejoining the fantastic TPC team at a time when tax policy is sure to be front and center on the national—and state and local—agendas. We will maintain the rigorous approach for which we are known and expand our analytical models as we seek new ways to inform the public, policymakers, and the press."
TPC's current tax model allows researchers to assess tax proposals by showing their revenue impact as well as their effects on the taxes paid by individuals and families at different income levels. Other original members of the TPC leadership team will remain in their current roles: co-directors Bill Gale (Brookings Institution) and Eric Toder (Urban Institute) as well as Urban Institute Fellow Eugene Steuerle.
Erika Poethig, Director of Urban Policy Initiatives
"Local leaders across the country are testing new, cross-cutting strategies in order to meet evolving family and community needs," said Wartell. "Erika is uniquely qualified to bring the Urban Institute's capacities for knowledge-building to bear in supporting these efforts."
With these new appointments, the Urban Institute capitalizes on its history of rigorous and independent policy research, strengthening and expanding its ability to engage with policymakers using knowledge that is both timely and relevant to the decisions they face.
"This is an exciting time at the Urban Institute," concluded Joel Fleishman, chair of the board of trustees. "Under the dynamic leadership of its new president, the organization is engaging in policy discussions and bringing knowledge and clear thinking where it is most needed—to the public and private actors at the federal, state, city, and community levels who are trying to improve lives and make government work better."
The Urban Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan policy research and educational organization that examines the social, economic, and governance challenges facing the nation. It provides information, analyses, and perspectives to public and private decisionmakers to help them address these problems and strives to deepen citizens' understanding of the issues and trade-offs that policymakers face.