At a Glance
- Career History: Deputy Director of the National Economic Council (January 2009 to January 2011); Director of the Hamilton Project at the Brookings Institution (2006 to 2008); Senior Fellow at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (2004 to 2006); Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) economic adviser for the 2004 presidential campaign
- Birthday: Aug. 18 1970
- Hometown: New York City, N.Y.
- Alma Mater: Harvard University, B.A. (social studies), 1992; M.A. (government); and Ph.D (economics), 2003
- Spouse: Eve Gerber
- Web site
Path to Power
Raised in New York City, Furman had a knack for juggling - literally. He would juggle apples, eggs, bowling balls, torches and knives on the streets of New York City, earning cash from onlookers.
But he didn't actually need the money. He lived a privileged childhood, going to the private Dalton School on the Upper East Side. His father, Jay Furman, owns a shopping-center development firm and also works as an attorney. The elder Furman sits on the board of New York University, and has a building named after him on the campus called Furman Hall, which he earned after giving more than $20 million to the school. Gail Furman, Jason's mother, is a well-respected child psychologist.
As a director of Rubin's Brookings Institution-based Hamilton Project, Furman is in the centrist economic camp that basically believes in free trade and lower deficits.
In an April 2008 article for Slate.com, Furman says realistic spending goals must be set that don't increase the Bush administration fiscal legacy of a $4 trillion deficit. Although universal health care, for instance, should be a priority in the Obama administration, it should not be implemented by growing the deficit.
Furman's mentor was Stiglitz, a former chairman of Clinton's Council of Economic Advisers and a Nobel Prize winning economics professor. He worked closely with Sperling, who was another Clinton economic council chair.
Furman was hired by Rubin to work for the Hamilton Project at the Brookings Institution.
Furman has contributed $9,840 to political campaigns since 1999. Rep. Dan Maffei (D-N.Y.) has received $5,100 of the total. Furman gave Judith Feder (D) $2,500 in her two failed attempts at winning the 10th district of Virginia. Gen. Clark accepted $2,000 from Furman during his run in the 2004 Democratic presidential primary. The only other candidate receiving funds was Gore in during his 2000 presidential run.