Magazine article American Banker

Gonzalez Demands That the Fed Hire More Minorities, Women

Magazine article American Banker

Gonzalez Demands That the Fed Hire More Minorities, Women

Article excerpt

WASHINGTON - House Banking Committee Chairman Henry B. Gonzalez demanded Wednesday that the Federal Reserve reform its hiring practices.

The Texas Democrat also issued a study critical of the central bank's record of employing women and minorities.

The 98-page study called on top Fed officials to act immediately to hire and promote more minority group members and women. It also recommended that the central bank change the way its district bank presidents are hired.

"Women and minorities at the Federal Reserve are almost completely excluded from high salaries and promotions," Rep. Gonzalez said. "This comes as no surprise, since it appears the Federal Reserve banks are merely paying lip service to the concepts of equal employment opportunity and affirmative action."

Few at the Top

The study - "Status of Equal Employment Opportunity at the Federal Reserve: Diversity Still Lacking" - found that the Fed's board of governors and district banks have no minority group members and only a handful of women at the "senior officer" level. Of the 10% of board employees with the highest salaries, 6% were from minorities, and 18% were female.

"The report demonstrates that minorities and women are consistently underrepresented in the highest-paid and most important decision-making positions at the board and reserve banks, a condition that unfortunately also exists at other federal banking regulatory agencies," Rep. Gonzalez wrote in a letter to members of his committee.

The report came as the Clinton administration stepped up its search for a governor to replace Wayne Angell, whose term expires in January.

In keeping with the President's goal of diversification, the administration has made no secret of its desire to replace Mr. Angell with a woman or member of a minority group.

The Lineup

The Fed board now comprises six white men and one white woman. …

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