White House Profile
Jack Lew
Former Chief of Staff

Jack Lew is former Chief of Staff to President Barack Obama. Prior to this role, he was the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), a position he previously held from 1998 to 2001. Before returning to OMB in 2010, Lew was the first Deputy Secretary of State for Management and Resources, in which capacity he served as Chief Operating Officer of the department.

Before joining the State Department, Lew served as managing director and chief operating officer of Citi Global Wealth Management and then Citi Alternative Investments (CAI). Before that, he was executive vice president and chief operating officer of New York University, where he was responsible for budget, finance, and operations, as well as a professor of public administration. From 2004 through 2008, Lew served on the Corporation for National and Community Service Board and chaired its Management, Administration, and Governance Committee.

Lew served in President Clinton’s cabinet as the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). From 1998 to 2001, he led the Administration budget team and served as a member of the National Security Council. During his tenure at OMB, the U.S. budget operated at a surplus for three consecutive years. Earlier, Lew served as OMB’s Deputy Director and was a member of the negotiating team that reached a bi-partisan agreement to balance the budget. As Special Assistant to President Clinton from 1993 to 1994, Mr. Lew helped design Americorps, the national service program.

Lew began his career in Washington in 1973 as a legislative aide. From 1979 to 1987, he was a principal domestic policy advisor to House Speaker Thomas P. O'Neill, Jr, where he served at the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee as Assistant Director and then Executive Director. There, he was the Speaker’s liaison to the Greenspan Commission, which negotiated a bipartisan solution to reform Social Security in 1983 and was responsible for domestic and economic issues, including Medicare, budget, tax, trade, appropriations, and energy issues.

Before joining the Obama Administration, Lew co-chaired the Advisory Board for City Year New York and was on the boards of the Kaiser Family Foundation, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, the Brookings Institution Hamilton Project, and the Tobin Project. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the National Academy of Social Insurance, and of the bar in Massachusetts and the District of Columbia.

Jack Lew's Posts

  • Women

    Women in America: Investing in What Works

    At a time when the Government is striving to do more with less, it is more important than ever to ensure we are investing in what works.


  • Women

    Women in America: Investing in what works

    In "Women in America: Investing in what works," Jack Lew, Director of the Office of Management and Budget discusses the White House release of the new report "Women in America: Indicators of Social and Economic Well-Being."


  • Fiscal Responsibility

    Progress for the Partnership

    Making sure that taxpayer dollars are not wasted lies at the heart of the stewardship obligations we have as public servants. When the country is facing serious fiscal challenges as it is now, it becomes even more important that we take aggressive action to make sure government is effective and efficient. That is the thinking behind the President’s Accountable Government Initiative, and it is what is behind OMB’s Partnership Fund for Program Integrity Innovation. The Fund supports projects that bring all levels of government together to test creative ways to reduce red tape, cut improper payments, and improve how eligible beneficiaries receive services.


  • Fiscal Responsibility

    A Primer on Primary Balance

    After two days of hearings on Capitol Hill and reading scores of articles, commentaries, and blogposts about the President’s Budget, there seems to be some confusion about a key accomplishment of this plan: putting the Budget into primary balance by the middle of the decade.


  • The 2012 Budget

    Jack Lew, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, lays out the priorities and responsibility of the President's Budget.


  • Seniors and Social Security

    A Tribute to Bob Ball

    Last Friday, I had the honor to deliver remarks at the dedication of the Robert M. Ball Federal Building in Baltimore.


  • Fiscal Responsibility

    Turning the Tide on Contract Spending

    “Buying less” and “buying smarter” are simple ideas to understand, but history tells us that these basic principles of fiscal responsibility are not as easy to implement as one might think. Since 1997, and in 18 of the past 20 years, total spending by the federal government on contracts has increased – and at a near break-neck pace of 12 percent per year between 2000 and 2008. During this eight-year period, annual procurement budgets grew from $200 billion a year to more than $500 billion a year.


  • Fiscal Responsibility

    Welcoming our 2010 SAVE Award Winner

    On Tuesday night, President Obama spoke about giving the American people a government that’s not only more affordable, but also more effective and more efficient. Federal employees are important partners in that effort. From inspecting the food heading to our tables and making sure Social Security checks go out on time to treating wounded troops and helping returning Veterans pursue higher education, Federal employees are working day in and day out to serve the American people. The President believes these frontline workers are essential to any effort to improve government.


  • Fiscal Responsibility

    Health Care Reform Check-Up

    Today, the House Budget Committee is holding a hearing about the fiscal impacts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which the President signed into law last year and has already given Americans new freedoms and protections. It’s important to get the facts straight about what impact the Affordable Care Act has on our deficits and long-range fiscal situation.


  • Civil Rights

    Celebrating MLK Day with City Year

    Jack Lew, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, reflects on his committment to service throughout his life, and discusses the importance of bettering our communities through service.


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