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Robert Friedman

Founder and Senior Strategic Advisor

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Robert (Bob) Friedman is the Founder and Senior Strategic Advisor to the 1:1 Fund. He also founded CFED in 1979 and continues as CFED’s Chair of the Board and General Counsel. Bob's most recent focus has been the launch of the 1:1 Fund. Bob was also an instrumental leader in the Saving for Education, Entrepreneurship and Downpayment (SEED) program, an incentive to create an inclusive system of children's saving accounts in the United States.

A recognized pioneer in the asset-building and economic development movement, Bob received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Microenterprise Development from President Bill Clinton in 1999. He helped create the U.S. microenterprise, savings and asset-building fields and the international economic development and child savings fields. Currently, he is focused on economic development strategies that ensure an inclusive economy where all children and adults have a reasonable opportunity to save, go to college, start a business, buy a home and otherwise build an economic future for themselves, their families and the country as a whole.

Bob is based in San Francisco (too far from his granddaughter) and serves on a number of Boards including Ecotrust, Child and Youth Finance International, the Rosenberg Foundation, Friedman Family Foundation and the Family Independence Initiative. He is a past board member of Levi Strauss & Co., a graduate of Harvard College and Yale Law School, and author of The Safety Net as Ladder: Transfer Payments and Economic Development.

Video

Bob’s Closing Remarks at ALC2010

Bob’s Remarks on SEED as a Critical Investment

Recent Blog Posts

Four Lessons Gleaned from the Children & Youth Finance International Summit (June 3, 2013)

The Ladder of Giving (March 14, 2013)

CFED’s Friedman Featured in Harvard Magazine (August 28, 2012)