President Barack Obama nominated Jacob “Jack” Lew as the next Secretary of the Treasury, which means aside from holding the top financial position in United States government, the Riverdalian’s signature may grace the bottom right hand corner of the bills in our wallets.
On Jan. 10, Mr. Obama nominated Mr. Lew, a resident of the Estate Area and member of the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale, as the next Secretary of the Treasury. If approved by the Senate, Mr. Lew, who currently serves as Mr. Obama’s chief of staff, will take over the top financial post in the country.
He’ll also have his signature printed onto the country’s currency. As many major news outlets pointed out last week, there is one problem with that: there don’t appear to be any letters in his signature. It looks like a doodle, or as Jon Stewart joked, “That’s your signature or are you just testing to see if the pen works?”
At the nomination announcement on Jan. 10, Mr. Obama said Mr. Lew was the best person to replace the departing secretary, Tim Geithner. Mr. Obama said Mr. Lew would be the best person to work toward rebuilding a strong middle class and “offer working folks new pathways to rise into the middle class.”
“I trust his judgment. I value his friendship. I know very few people with greater integrity …” Mr. Obama said.
The president also joked about the signature.
“… I never noticed Jack’s signature and when this was highlighted yesterday in the press, I considered rescinding my offer to appoint him,” he said, eliciting laughter from the crowd. “Jack assures me that he is going to work to make at least one letter legible in order not to debase our currency should he be confirmed as Secretary of the Treasury.”
Despite serving in prominent positions in the Clinton and Obama administrations, Mr. Lew is known as someone who keeps a low profile. He grew up in Queens, where he said he “had dreams of making a difference in the world.”
He married Ruth Schwartz, his high school sweetheart, according to news reports. They have two grown children together.