Wilbur Ross, Secretary of Commerce

Wilbur Ross

Secretary of Commerce

Wilbur Louis Ross, Jr. was born in November 1937 in Weehawken, New Jersey. He received a BA from Yale College and earned his MBA from Harvard Business School. His Yale adviser got him his first summer job on Wall Street.

Ross had a 24-year career at N. Rothschild & Sons but when the investment bankers’ bubble began to burst, he established WL Ross & Co. He would later found International Steel Group, after purchasing the assets of several bankrupt steel companies. Dealing with other distressed industries, he founded the International Textile Group, the International Automotive Components Group, and the International Coal Group.

In the political arena, Ross served under President Bill Clinton on the board of the U.S.-Russia Investment Fund. Later, under New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Ross served as the mayor’s privatization advisor. He was nominated by President Donald Trump to be Secretary of Commerce, and was confirmed by the U.S. Senate in a 72-27 vote, and sworn in at the end of February 2017.

Ross is married to Hillary, his third wife. With his first wife, he had two daughters. He is Jewish.

In the News…

The president recently announced additional government aid for industries such as the airlines and for farmers amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, but little further aid would be going to other sectors such as restaurants.

Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross defended the president’s move. In an interview, he said, “The reason the White House might be receptive to a stand-alone deal is that it’s not right to punish the airlines differentially because of coronavirus. We’ve got to bridge the airlines… bridge their employees if we can through that period” until there is a COVID-19 vaccine.

Current federal aid is set to expire October 1 and multiple carriers have said they will have to lay off thousands of pilots and other workers without additional relief.

Secretary Ross also said that while China was purchasing more American farm goods, there was still a lag and that American farmers were also being hit by the virus. He said, “It still is necessary to give the farmers a helping hand through this temporary period.”

Asked about other businesses such as restaurants, Ross said, “Restaurants… got protected in a different way,” with programs aimed at small businesses, even though they were not restaurant-specific.

Contact this Leader…

Did you pray for Secretary Ross today? You can let him know at:

The Honorable Wilbur Ross, Secretary
U.S. Department of Commerce
1401 Constitution Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20230


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