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John Geanakoplos


Mr. President, it is my distinct pleasure to present John Geanakoplos, the James Tobin Professor of Economics at Yale University.

Mr. Geanakoplos, you have forged an estimable career in the upper reaches of academia and economics. You have been described as “the economist that the Obama Administration should have listened to” for your forensic analysis of the subprime mortgage crisis; and your paper on the leverage cycle is considered by your peers as the preeminent scholarly examination of the crisis’ causes and impacts.

Your tie to Clark University is biological — your mother Effie was one of the first women to graduate from Clark in 1943. She went on to become a Fulbright scholar in Greece, helping to advance the field of social work there and in America. Your Greek heritage is a particular point of pride, and led you to co-found and co-direct the Hellenic Studies Program at Yale.

I am especially pleased to be making this presentation, because we share a personal and professional connection spanning twenty years. We met in 1994 when you were chief economist at Kidder Peabody and I was a young attorney in the bond department. Two decades later we reconnected when I served as general counsel at Ellington Capital Management, where you are a founding partner. It’s been my honor to be your lawyer at two junctures in your illustrious career.

Your awards and accolades are too numerous to cite. They stand as a testament to the respect you have earned for your acumen and insight, and as someone to whom we should listen.

Mr. President, on behalf of the trustees, faculty, students and staff of Clark University, I request that the degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa, be conferred on John Geanakoplos.