Former SEC Commissioner Michael Piwowar To Lead Milken Institute Center For Financial Markets

Press Release

Former SEC Commissioner Michael Piwowar To Lead Milken Institute Center For Financial Markets

WASHINGTON, September 5, 2018 – Michael Piwowar, Ph.D., the respected economist and longtime commissioner of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), has been named executive director of the Milken Institute Center for Financial Markets. 

Throughout his distinguished career, Dr. Piwowar has been at the forefront of policymaking and regulatory oversight that protects investors, safeguards financial markets, and promotes economic growth and opportunity. From 2013 to 2018, he served as a commissioner at the SEC, and as acting chair in 2017, where he played a major role voting on nearly 5,000 matters, including more than 100 rulemakings and more than 3,400 enforcement actions.

“Mike Piwowar is admired for his keen understanding of economics, strategic and balanced approach to policymaking, powerful advocacy for investors, and effective leadership,” said Richard Ditizio, President and Chief Operating Officer of the Milken Institute. “He brings the deep market expertise and extensive bipartisan network that will enable our Center for Financial Markets to continue to expand financial market understanding, financial inclusion, and access to capital.”

Before his SEC appointment, Dr. Piwowar was chief economist for the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, playing a key role in the development of legislation to enact reforms and support recovery from the 2008 financial crisis, including the Dodd-Frank Act (2010) and the JOBS Act (2012). 

Previously, Dr. Piwowar was a senior economist at the President’s Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) in both the Barack Obama and George W. Bush administrations, where he provided economic advice to the President on issues related to the global financial crisis and served as CEA’s representative to the financial regulatory reform working group of the President’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board.

 “As a nonpartisan think tank, the Milken Institute’s talented staff and distinguished fellows are highly regarded for conducting programs and fostering policies to support the development of capital markets that broaden economic opportunity and financial inclusion,” said Piwowar. “I am pleased to bring my experience from the SEC, the White House, Congress, and academia to lead the Institute’s efforts in these areas.”

Prior to his posts in Washington, Dr. Piwowar was on the faculty of Iowa State University where he taught undergraduate and graduate courses in corporate finance and investments. He holds a B.A. in Foreign Service and International Politics from the Pennsylvania State University, an M.B.A. from Georgetown University, and a Ph.D. in Finance from the Pennsylvania State University.

Dr. Piwowar’s stewardship and impact at the SEC through two presidential administrations was widely praised when he announced plans to complete his service as a commissioner in May.

“Mike has worked tirelessly in support of the agency’s mission,” current SEC chairman Jay Clayton said in May, citing Dr. Piwowar’s leadership for “emphasizing the importance of economic analysis in the agency’s efforts, and for raising the level of involvement and rigor of the Commission’s analysis in matters ranging from rulemaking to enforcement. Mike’s long-lasting commitment to public service has made a difference for our markets and Main Street investors.”

This work will continue at the Milken Institute, where for more than 20 years, the Center for Financial Markets has conducted programs and offered analysis on a broad range of economic issues, including the development of capital markets, technological innovation, housing policy, and financial regulation.

Dr. Piwowar will be based in the Milken Institute’s Washington, D.C. offices. He begins on Wednesday, September 5.


About the Milken Institute

The Milken Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank determined to increase global prosperity by advancing collaborative solutions that widen access to capital, create jobs, and improve health. The Institute conducts independent, data-driven research, action-oriented meetings, and meaningful policy initiatives. For more information, visit



Geoffrey Baum

Director, Media Relations

(310) 570-4689;

Published April 8, 2019