Our Team

Ellen Hodgson Brown

President Emeritus, Founder, and Senior Advisor

Ellen Brown, J.D., developed her research skills as an attorney practicing civil litigation in Los Angeles. She is the author of 11 books, and will be releasing another in 2011 focused on public banking. In Web of Debt, her most recent book, she traces the history and evolution of the current private banking system. She shows how it has usurped the power to create money from the people themselves, and how we the people can get it back. Ellen has written nearly 100 articles on this subject since Web of Debt was first published, and is the inspiration and thought leader behind the Public Banking Institute, where she serves as Chairman and President. She has degrees from UC Berkeley and UCLA School of Law.

Ann Tulintseff, Treasurer

Ann Tulintseff is an electrical engineer with 25 years experience in the aerospace industry. An early member of PBI, Ann believes that monetary reform and public banking are fundamental to achieving economic and political justice as well as real democracy and world peace. Inspired by Ellen Brown's book, "Web of Debt," Ann authored a book review entitled, "The government is in debt to private banks that pretend to have money," published in March, 2009. In addition to monetary reform, Ann also has interests in alternative medicine, diet, and the "electric universe." Ann has Ph.D., E.E., S.M., and S.B. degrees in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, with her studies in the fields of antennas, electromagnetic wave theory, and applied mathematics.

Lawrence Taubman

Lawrence Taubman's conscience for social justice was formed as a child living under Jim Crow in Oklahoma. His first act as an activist was quelling a race riot on the campus of his Southern California high school the day Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated. So successful was the program that he developed that the Ford Foundation studied it and created a model that was implemented throughout other schools to prevent racial strife.

After attending law school for two years, Taubman took a leave of absence to open a fringe theater in London, England where for several years he produced and directed the premiere of award-winning, American off-Broadway plays, including David Rabe's anti-Vietnam War Sticks & Bones which was invited to the English National Theatre. After returning to and graduating from law school with honors, Taubman practiced litigation in Los Angeles until his passion for social and racial justice led him to form a film production company and to produce Hollywood's only anti-apartheid drama told from the Black perspective.

Today, Taubman is in production and post-production on a number of feature documentaries, as well as co-founding and acting as publisher of a major, international, activist website. Taubman sees Public Banking as a social justice issue with the potential of being a genuinely transformative solution to the unsustainable and corrupt practices of the current banking and financial system. Taubman lives in Seattle, where he revels in the beauty of the Pacific Northwest: running, kayaking, hiking, horseback riding.

Lawrence Murin

Larry was the Vice President of the United Labor Council in Reading and Berks County, PA, and has been working as a Special Assistant to the Mayor with the City of Reading to establish a Public Bank.

Gwendolyn Hallsmith
Executive Director

Gwen most recently made national headlines with her work in Vermont to ask Town Meetings to consider public banking. On March 4th, 18 cities and towns in Vermont voted to endorse a resolution directing the state legislators to create a State Bank for Vermont. Thanks to the media expertise of William Boardman and Matt Stannard, the national media has picked up on the story, and there have been now over 20 radio interviews, print stories, and starting this week we’ll be on syndicated television with the story as well… Gwen has an interview with GritTV on Tuesday, and we understand that even bigger shows are working on the story – stay tuned.

Gwen is the author of several books on sustainable communities and economic reform, including her most recent book with Bernard Lietaer called Creating Wealth: Growing Local Communities with Local Currencies. She has been an advocate for economic reform for over 25 years, and implemented new currency projects on the local level in her recent position as the Director of Planning and Community Development for the City of Montpelier. Her work spans the globe – she has worked in all the major world regions at this point, and with cities, towns, regions, provinces, and states in the United States and Canada.

Her vision for the Public Banking Institute expands our horizons to include many other aspects of a public monetary system, everything from strengthening the possibilities for local investment that the new SEC regulations allow to fostering and supporting complementary currencies for local and regional means of exchange. Her deep commitment to local action matches our vision for the Institute as a source of technical assistance, training, and research for all the state, regional, and local initiatives underway to set up public banks and other currency and investment initiatives.

Mike Krauss

Mike Krauss is a former officer of county and state government, Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Republican State Committee and an advisor to regional and national political and public policy organizations. His public service has focused on energy and water conservation, rural housing rehabilitation and historic preservation. Mike has broad experience in North American and international commerce as the Vice President of Leasing and International Sales for the Strick Companies, CEO of Remex SA de CV and AVP Automotive and Intermodal for a Class I railroad, TFM SA de CV (now Kansas City Southern de Mexico). He is the author of the forthcoming novel "Pursuits of Happiness," and his by line has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Philadelphia Inquirer, other daily newspapers and regularly in the Bucks County Courier Times. He is currently researching a social study of post World War II suburban United States. Mike is a Lay Minister in the Episcopal Church and describes himself as "passionate about justice, indifferent to authority."

Christapher C. Cogswell, Board Chair

Cultural anthropologist and social entrepreneur, Christapher has a passion for exploring human potential and advancing sustainable culture - and has worked for two decades in the foundational areas of money, energy, and food/health, co-founding companies in holistic nutrition, perinatal health, and next generation biofuels. One of the founding members of the Public Banking Institute, Christapher is passionate about the power of public banks to help transform our economy and support real long term prosperity.

Christapher is currently Executive Director of The Brighton Foundation, and is the author of the forthcoming book Love Blooming about the power of preconception preparation to transform our children's health. He worked on Paul Wellstone's legendary initial campaign for Senate while a student at Carleton College where he also started a Green Party. Christapher is an avid hiker, makes a sauerkraut that tastes like fine wine, and is on the honorary board of the Weston A. Price Foundation.

Rickey Gard Diamond, Board Scribe

Rickey Gard Diamond is founding editor of Vermont Woman, a retired professor of Liberal Studies at Union Institute & University and a novelist and short story writer. Rickey’s love of Orwell’s “Politics and the English Language” influenced her teaching, as did women writers like Muriel Ruykeyser and Audre Lourde, who saw how language shapes and controls our thoughts. Economic language, now owned by the few, requires new language to reshape a living economy—and many more women must be part of that process. Rickey had direct experience with the unique hardships women face when she became a working single mother of three, and had to apply for welfare to feed her children. Since that time, she’s been a tireless anti-poverty advocate. Ellen Brown, Gwendolyn Hallsmith and public banking were featured in her series of articles, “An Economy of Our Own,” which won a National Newspaper Association award for “Best Investigative In-Depth Story Series” in 2012, citing her “atypical sources.” It can be found at Vermont Woman’s website, or on her blog, Gaia and Eros: An Economy for the Planet and Passionate People. A secretly aspiring cartoonist, Rickey shares her life with the best man in the world, two poodles and two goats, Tassle and Buster. Next winter, all but the goats plan to travel in an RV and spend time with a passel of grandkids.

Landon Carter

Landon graduated from Yale and Harvard Business School, was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Peru, taught at Stanford's Business School in Lima, worked for several Wall Street investment firms, was a trainer for est and LifeSpring, started several businesses, did team building and coaching for senior executives of Fortune 500 companies, has worked on complementary currency projects in New Zealand and South America, is a world champion rower and completed the Iditarod Dog Sled race in 1980.

Walt McRee

Prior to his new role on the board, Walt McRee has been a Senior Advisor to PBI since early 2011 and also currently serves as a director of the Pennsylvania Public Bank Project. Walt is a media consultant, writer, producer, marketing entrepreneur and voice talent who’s devised and executed national media campaigns for world hunger, the environment, public broadcasting and the arts. As CEO of the Alliance for Public Broadcasting, Inc. he pioneered new fundraising principles and programs for use in public radio and TV stations nationwide. His media initiatives intend to expand citizen participation in pivotal public concerns, particularly over control of public moneys for use in the public interest and revival of local economies. Walt has produced a number of videos for PBI and currently co-hosts and produces "It's Our Money with Ellen Brown" (podcasts @ PRN.FM) a new online radio show focusing on monetary issues and public banking. He serves national and global clients in his voice-over career and still hasn't forgiven Michael Jackson for taking the Pepsi Challenge on-air campaign away from him back in the 80's.......