Lucio Vinhas de Souza is currently an Advisor to the leadership of the European External Action Service (EEAS), the EU’s “Department of State”. Before that, he led the Economics Team at the European Political Strategy Centre, an internal advisory body to the European Commission President. Prior to that, he was Managing Director and Sovereign Chief Economist at Moody’s Investors Service, based at its headquarters in New York. Before joining Moody’s, he was a World Bank official based in Washington, D.C. His main work areas are global macroeconomics, finance and country risk.
Michael Kurtzig was an international economist with the US Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service until 2000. He joined the department in the late 1960s as a Middle East expert, first as a country desk officer, then as Assistant Branch Chief and then Chief of the Africa and Middle East Branch. He travelled extensively in the Middle East, particularly Turkey, Israel, Iran, Cyprus, as well as an analyst for Jordan. His work centered on agricultural foreign policy, data, and US trade. He wrote extensively on those subjects. He led a number of missions for the USDA, the World Bank, and USAID to Iran, Jordan, Turkey and Israel, as well as Gaza and the West Bank. After retirement he taught in Congregational and Day schools in Philadelphia and Alexandria on the Holocaust, Anti-Semitism, Hebrew, Israel and Jewish Communities around the World. He has been a member of NEC for many years and values the comradeship and the many excellent interesting speakers who keep us up to date and contribute to the knowledge base of the industry. He lives in DC with his wife Barbara and his rescue dog, Bob.
Ed Kean serves as Senior Economic Policy Analyst and Chief Editor for the Observatory Group. He has worked as an economic policy analyst for the Observatory Group since 2007. In that capacity, Ed has analyzed developments regarding US monetary, fiscal, trade and financial regulatory policy. Prior to joining the Observatory Group, he served as a senior Fed analyst for the G7 Group. Ed also has held various positions with the National Economists Club, including serving as President of the Club in 2011.