From the CEO
Published October 19, 2016
I am writing this in the midst of one of the most bitterly fought presidential elections in decades. But at the Milken Institute, even as we follow electoral politics with keen interest, the results of this year's contest won't change how we conduct our work. While we maintain a significant presence in Washington DC, we don't fall into the pattern of many public policy organizations there whose fortunes revolve around who's in and who's out. Our practice since the Institute was founded in 1991 has been to tackle the nation's problems in the most effective way we know – and that means working with those who want to accomplish important things, no matter their political affiliation.
Some recent examples of the Institute's results-oriented non-partisanship:
- Our FasterCures center has unveiled "Rx for Innovation," a program to inform the next administration's views on the challenges facing the biomedical system. The center is reaching out to patient groups, researchers, companies, philanthropists and policymakers for their input, with the goal of crafting practical recommendations for accelerating access to new and better treatments.
- Housing finance is one area in urgent need of policy change, as revealed by the financial crisis. Experts at the Institute's Center for Financial Markets are working with legislators and their staff on both sides of the aisle to develop guidance for housing finance reform that could be supported by both parties.
- An equally urgent national need is expanded access to capital for business owners and entrepreneurs in minority communities. Our California Center and our Center for Financial Markets are partnering with the Small Business Administration on a pilot program bringing together elected officials, business owners and lenders in two cities (Baltimore and Los Angeles) to chart how best to make credit and equity investment available to African-American and Latino small businesses.
- This summer, the Institute partnered with the Bipartisan Policy Center to host forums at both political conventions. Among the issues addressed: medical innovation, economic competitiveness and tax policy.
The Institute's non-partisanship is part of our DNA. So, while we'll be watching the inauguration ceremonies with interest come January 20, we will be ready to work with whoever's in charge at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
Michael Klowden, CEO and President