Albert Gallatin, one of the financial founding fathers:What can we learn from him today?

Philipp Hildebrand, Vice Chairman of the Governing Board

Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce, Geneva, 10.09.2008

Albert Gallatin was born in Geneva in 1761. He emigrated to the United States at the age of nineteen. In 1801, US President Thomas Jefferson appointed him Secretary of the Treasury. With thirteen years in office, Gallatin remains the longest serving Treasury Secretary. During his term, Gallatin made a crucial contribution to the stability and development of the nascent United States financial system. He was deeply committed to reducing the size of the federal public debt. Gallatin's legacy holds the lesson that public debt reduction requires an unwavering political commitment to fiscal discipline. This lesson remains relevant in the context of today's fiscal challenges.