Ambassador to Germany: Who is Philip Murphy?

Sunday, July 04, 2010

A former powerbroker on Wall Street, Philip D. Murphy was confirmed as the U.S. ambassador to Germany August 7, 2009, after spending several years during the mid-1990s as head of Goldman Sachs’ Frankfurt office. His familiarity with the German economy, however, isn’t the only reason why he was selected by President Barack Obama for the diplomatic post. Murphy held the Democratic Party’s top finance job from 2006-2009, and he and his wife, Tammy, have contributed more than $1 million to Democratic candidates over the years.

 
A native of the Boston area, Murphy was born in 1957. He graduated from Harvard University in 1979 with a bachelor’s in economics, and then attended the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania to earn his MBA in 1983.
 
Murphy first joined Goldman Sachs in 1982 as a summer associate, embarking on what became a 23-year career with the firm, rising to senior director in 2003. Working in the U.S., Europe and Asia, Murphy served as head of the German Region (1993-1997), president of Goldman Sachs Asia (1997-1999), and global co-head of the Investment Management Division. He also served on the firm’s management committee. He retired from Goldman Sachs in 2006.
 
In 2005, Murphy chaired a task force that proposed reforms to New Jersey's pension system for public employees.
 
After leaving Goldman Sachs, Murphy was offered the post of National Finance Chair by the Democratic National Committee’s top man, Howard Dean. Murphy faced a stiff challenge to improve the DNC’s fundraising, which at one point lagged behind its rival, the Republican National Committee, $57.3 million v. $36.8 million, in 2007.
 
During the Democratic presidential primary, Murphy, a party superdelegate, remained uncommitted between Obama and rival Hillary Clinton through May 2008.
 
After leaving the DNC early in 2009, Murphy focused on his own business, Murphy Endeavors, LLC, before receiving the nomination of ambassador to Germany.
 
OpenSecrets.org has included Murphy and his wifet in its list of Goldman Sachs employees who have contributed at least $50,000 to federal candidates and parties during one or more election cycles. The Murphys’ total contributions are listed at $1,221,500 with 92% going to Democrats.
 
Aside from his work on Wall Street and in the Democratic Party, Murphy has served on the boards or in other capacities for The Goldman Sachs Foundation, Investment Company Institute, Local Initiatives Support Corporation, NAACP Special Contribution Fund, Center for American Progress, 180 Turning Lives Around, the University of Pennsylvania’s Huntsman Program, the Wharton School’s Graduate Executive and Asian program, Prosperity New Jersey, and the NAACP’s President/CEO Search Committee.
 
He co-chaired a task force on public education with then-Arizona Governor (and now Secreetary of Homeland Security) Janet Napolitano and Professor Roger Wilkins of George Mason University.
 
Murphy’s interest in soccer led him to serve on the boards of the U.S. Soccer Foundation and the U.S. Soccer Federation World Cup Bid Committee to win either the 2018 or 2022 World Cup, and to help bring a professional women’s soccer franchise Sky Blue FC, to New Jersey in 2008.
 
Murphy and his wife, who met in 1987 and married in 1994, have three sons and one daughter.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
 
Philip Murphy Biography (State Department)
Ex-Goldman Sachs Honcho's Donkey Fight (by Nina Easton, CNN Money)
Germany (AllGov)

Comments

Carl Wilhjelm 3 years ago
I met Ambassador Murphy at a recent breakfast in Caldwell. I would like to extend an invitation to the Ambassador to speak to our Democratic Club at Cedar Crest, The meeting date is Tuesday,January 26 at 7:00 PM. Cedar Crest is an adult community with approximately 1800 residents. Our Club is known as the most effective Democratic organization in Morris County. I would be happy to send Ambassador Murphy a formal invitation if you can send me his mailing address. Sincerely, Carl C. Wilhjelm Municipal Chair, Pequannock Township Morris County Democratic Committee 404 Greenleaf Court Pompton Plains, NJ 07444 973 835 2422 ccwaswdk@aol.com

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