February 18, 2021

Dear Members of the Harvard Kennedy School Community,

I am writing on the sad news of the passing of Bob Glauber this past weekend. Bob was an adjunct lecturer at the Kennedy School for most of the last three decades, following more than a quarter-century as a professor of finance at Harvard Business School.

As a teacher, Bob was known for his ability to help his students think more clearly and for his devotion to them. He was always willing to spend time with students and to encourage them in their lives. Perhaps he was influenced by the mentoring that he had received himself years earlier as an undergraduate student at Harvard College and a doctoral student at Harvard Business School.

Bob also leaves an important legacy of government service. He served as undersecretary of the Treasury for finance for President George H.W. Bush and later as chief executive officer of the private-sector regulator of U.S. securities markets (then known as NASD and now called FINRA). He was also executive director of the influential task force appointed by President Ronald Reagan to report on the October 1987 stock market crash.  

Our colleague Professor Roger Porter worked with Bob in the George H.W. Bush administration when Bob successfully led the negotiations in resolving the savings and loan crisis. Roger told me: “Sometimes those in departments seek to control rather than to consult … to be in charge and to be seen as in charge. Bob chose the path of consultation and cooperation rather than confrontation and contention. He shared and disclosed rather than hid and obfuscated. It was a joy to work with him.”

Bob Glauber was a great teacher and remarkable public servant. We are poorer without him in our midst, and we will miss him very much. Our thoughts go out to his family.



Douglas W. Elmendorf
Dean and Don K. Price Professor of Public Policy
Harvard Kennedy School