WITH DARRYL GETTER, PH.D., ’87 Darryl Getter is a specialist in financial economics for the Congressional Research Service. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from Washington University in St. Louis. Q: What does the Congressional Research Service do? A: The Congressional Research Service (CRS) is a unit of the Library of Congress that provides research and analysis on all legislative and oversight issues of interest to Congress. In short, CRS is Congress’ own nonpartisan think tank. Q: What is your role within the organization? A: I focus on legislative proposals debated primarily in the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs and House Financial Services committees. My portfolio of research topics includes consumer credit markets, banking, fair lending, funding loans in the secondary markets and systemic risk. My research is used to help Congress hold more informed deliberations when performing its oversight responsibilities over the federal financial regulators as well as when debating the ramifications of policy proposals introduced in the committees of jurisdiction. Q: Can you tell us about some of the more interesting projects to which you’ve contributed?
A: Shortly after arriving at CRS, the housing market and the financial markets experienced a downturn generally referred to as the Great Recession. In response, Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010, which potentially may have an impact on the banking and financial landscape comparable to the historic GlassStegall Act of 1933. While the House and Senate deliberated on their versions of the bill, I provided objective, nonpartisan analysis in the form of reports and briefings on various provisions, specifically on possible intended and unintended consequences. Q: What about economics intrigued you to make it your life’s work? A: When I was an undergraduate, the discipline of economics seemed to be a culmination of many individual disciplines. Economics relies on concepts from mathematics, statistics, history, political science, psychology, and business. Because I had never traveled outside of the Midwest (until after graduating from Rockhurst), I just assumed people
gained knowledge by choosing the right major. Thus, a major that included a little bit of everything seemed to be the way to go. Needless to say, I had no formal strategy; I pursued this path because I really did not have a better plan in mind at the time! Q: How does your Rockhurst education shape your approach to your work? A: During my junior and senior years, I worked at Rockhurst’s tutoring center as an economics and statistics tutor. Given how much I enjoyed teaching, a faculty member suggested that I get an advanced degree and talked me into applying for graduate school. It was a blessing to have someone recognize my potential as a future professor and subsequently push me in that direction when I lacked the self-confidence or know-how to make such informed choices on my own. My experiences at Rockhurst, therefore, have inspired me to “pay it forward” or reach out to those students who, like me, need help figuring out “next steps.”
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