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Goolsbee, a business professor at the University of Chicago and a long-time economic advisor to President Obama, is currently a member of the Council of Economic Advisers and Chief Economist of the President's Economic Recovery Advisory Board.
"Austan has been one of my good friends and close economic advisors for many years. He is one of the finest economists in the country, and he's worked as a member of the Council of Economic Advisers since we arrived in office," the President said in a statement. "He's not just a brilliant economist, he's someone who has a deep appreciation of how the economy affects everyday people, and he talks about it in a way that's easily understood. He already knows and works with the rest of the team very well, and I have complete confidence he'll do an outstanding job as CEA Chair."
Goolsbee replaces Dr. Christina Romer as Chair, who returned to her teaching career at the University of California at Berkeley last week. Romer's controversial tenure was marked by the predication that the country's unemployment rate would not exceed 8% if the stimulus bill was passed. Today, it stands at 9.6%.
Goolsbee was previously confirmed by the U.S. Senate as a member of the CEA and will not need to be reconfirmed by the Senate.