Central alumni, faculty and students now have the opportunity to get a glimpse into what it was like to be on the front lines of the world’s financial markets over the last half century. Central alumnus Eugene (Gene) Rotberg (188) has gifted selected speeches and articles to Central High School. Mr. Rotberg, a lawyer and international investment banker, served as Vice President and Treasurer of the World Bank from 1968 to 1987. Prior to that, he served 11 years with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. Mr. Rotberg chose Central to house these important documents for several reasons. “I benefited from the diversity of my fellow students at Central and that opened my eyes to different cultures from around the world,” said Mr. Rotberg who also said the diversity of Central High School was immeasurably enhanced by the addition of women to the student body. “I would not have made this donation to the school had women not been admitted,” Mr. Rotberg added.
Mr. Rotberg said Central had a very accomplished faculty that facilitated his understanding of literature, history and the humanities. He said they are inseparable and provided a solid foundation for what he would achieve in his professional life working closely with developing countries. The materials are in four parts. The first part is “Globalization, Poverty and Protectionism,” which deals with the economic conditions in the developing world. In particular, these articles/speeches describe the forces at play in developing countries which account for the trade imbalances between industrialized and developing countries and why these forces are irreversible. The second part is “Finance, Capital Market and Systemic Risk,” which deals with the world of finance over the last 50 years. These articles/speeches describe how and why the financial savings of the industrialized world will continue to be channeled into developing countries to support their economic development. The third part is “Emerging Countries and the Debt Crisis,” which deals with the debt crisis of the 1970s/1980s which put the world banking system at risk. The fourth part includes published articles that primarily describe Mr. Rotberg’s role as Vice President and Treasurer in the Bank’s financial operations.
Mr. Rotberg, who was inducted into the Central High School Alumni Hall of Fame in 1979, said these subjects are not typically taught in the high school classroom and it’s important for high school students to understand the effects and links between globalization and domestic economic policy. He hopes his donation sparks other alumni to consider making gifts to Central. The materials can be accessed at www.generotberg188.com or by hard copy at the Central High School library.