Fed begins search for Kohn successor

City A.M. Reporter
US President Barack Obama will nominate a replacement for Federal Reserve vice chairman Donald Kohn, who is stepping down from his post, in time for confirmation before Kohn’s term ends on 23 June.

“We are not naming a successor today but we do plan to announce a nominee in time for confirmation before the end of Kohn's term,” a US?official said.

Kohn, a 40-year veteran of the US central bank, will step down in late June, giving Obama a freer hand to reshape the institution.

“The Federal Reserve and the country owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to Don Kohn for his invaluable contributions,” Fed chairman Ben Bernanke said in a statement.

Kohn, 67, began his career at the Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank in 1970 and rose through the ranks to become one of the more influential vice chairmen in the central bank's history. Before becoming a member of the Fed’s board in August 2002, Kohn served as a top monetary policy adviser to then-Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan.

Kohn’s departure will leave three seats vacant on the normally seven-person Fed board, giving Obama broad latitude to shape the central bank at a time lawmakers are considering lessening its power after the most damaging financial crisis in generations.

Members of the Fed board are nominated by the president, but subject to confirmation by the US Senate.