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Our News

July 11, 2017

Our Employees Help the Public Understand the Fed

A decentralized central bank: Renee Haltom explains the makeup and geographic locations of the Federal Reserve System.

By Laura Fortunato

Fed Raises Interest Rates for Second Time in 2017; Fed Chairwoman Yellen to Testify July 12 in Congress

These are just a few of the recent headlines about the Federal Reserve’s work as the nation’s central bank. But they tell only part of the story, as people living in communities served by the Richmond Fed are learning.

Fed Ambassadors speak to a variety of organizations throughout the region to help them get to know the Richmond Fed and better understand its role in supporting the Fed’s mission.

VCU Mandela Fellows discover their connection to the Federal Reserve System by attending a Fed Ambassador presentation.

“Most of us only see the Federal Reserve as an institution that sets interest rates,” said Joe Hales, member of the Colonial Heights Kiwanis Club following a June presentation by information technology employee Allen Bowman. “We now know it is much more than that.”

As part of the Fed Ambassador program, Richmond Fed employees of all backgrounds and tenure speak with varied audiences about our mission and work. Presentations cover Fed history and governance, monetary policy, supervision and regulation, payments, information technology and community engagement.

So far this year, Fed Ambassadors have presented to more than 500 community members. They also have helped onboard new employees and interns.

Fed Ambassador Charles Bennett presented during the Bank’s new employee orientation in May. Summer intern Abby Guitar who was in the audience described her takeaway from the experience.

“I think that it was a great way to dispel some common misconceptions about the Federal Reserve,” Guitar said. “It was definitely helpful to go into this internship experience knowing more about the organization we work for!”

The number of Fed Ambassadors has more than doubled to 40 in the past year. With the addition of new Ambassadors, the group is excited to speak with others, including community groups, schools and businesses. If your group is interested in learning more about the Fed, simply request a speaker to have a Fed Ambassador come to you. Or visit to register your group for a presentation and tour at the Richmond Fed.

Contact Us

Jim Strader
(804) 697-8956
(804) 332-0207 (mobile)

Laura Fortunato
(804) 697-8196
(804) 698-0927 (mobile)