NEW YORK (Reuters) - Former Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin is stepping down from his role as senior counselor at New York-based Citigroup Inc, after nearly 10 years at the bank.
Rubin, who turned 70 in August, also had a stint as President Clinton’s economic adviser and spent 26 years at Goldman Sachs.
Born in New York City on August 29, 1938, Rubin has a bachelor’s degree from Harvard College and a law degree from Yale University, and spent a year in Britain at the London School of Economics. He and his wife have two adult sons.
This is a chronology of his career at Citigroup:
October 1999 - Rubin joined Citigroup as Chairman of the Executive Committee of the board.
He was part of a three-person Office of the Chairman with Sanford “Sandy” Weill and John Reed, then chairmen and co-chief executive officers. Reed retired from Citigroup in 2000 and Charles Prince then took over from Weill in 2003.
In a statement at the time, Weill said, “Bob’s expertise, skills and professional judgment are exactly matched to our worldwide business strategy and we are delighted that he has agreed to join us. As a member of the Office of the Chairman, Bob will participate in strategic managerial and operational matters of the Company, but will have no line responsibilities.”
In 2006 he received $29.4 million from compensation and stock awards — but he faced criticism from analysts who said it wasn’t clear what he did to earn his pay.
November 2007 - Rubin was named interim chairman of Citi, following the resignation of Charles Prince as chairman and chief executive.
December 2007 - Citigroup named Vikram Pandit as chief executive and Rubin returned to his duties as a member of the board of directors and chairman of the executive committee.
April 2008 - Rubin and Citigroup faced increasing criticism for their handling of the spiraling credit crunch.
In comments published in the New York Times on April 27, after credit problems began surfacing but before they mushroomed, Rubin said “I don’t feel responsible, in light of the facts as I knew them in my role.”
August 2008 - Rubin was named senior counselor as part of several changes to Citi’s board initiated by Pandit. The executive committee that Rubin had chaired was dissolved but his role at the bank remained unchanged.
November 2008 - Many commentators, editorial pages, websites and blogs were by now criticizing Rubin for his role in the woes at Citigroup.
A November 23 front-page story in the New York Times called Rubin, a former U.S. treasury secretary in the Clinton administration, “an architect of the bank’s strategy” to chase profit by expanding in collateralized debt obligations and other risky products.
In an interview on PBS’s Charlie Rose show on November 25, Pandit defended him: “In the 11 months that I’ve been in this job as I worked with him, it’s pretty clear that he doesn’t drive the execution decisions.”
And on November 26 the bank responded to the Times article, labeling it “misleading and inaccurate.”
December 2008 - Rubin said he will forego a bonus, along with Pandit, after a year of heavy losses sent the bank’s share price plunging.
January 2009 - Rubin resigned, stepping down immediately from his role at Citi. In a letter to Pandit, he admitted to not having foreseen the credit crisis and market deterioration.
Reporting by Elinor Comlay; editing by Carol Bishopric