Dr Romero Philip J. Romero, an economist, policy analyst, and applied mathematician, is dean of the Cal State LA business school. CSULA is one of the largest educators of first-generation college students in the U.S.   Most students are immigrants, or children of immigrants. CBE's goal is to be the gateway to the middle class, preparing undergraduate and master's students for professional careers.

Romero was a Professor of Business Administration at the University of Oregon's Lundquist College of Business since the summer of 1999, where he held the Miller chair. He taught courses combining economics and corporate strategy. From 1999-2004 he served as dean.  The college is one of the two highest ranked business schools in the U.S. Northwest, with component programs (e.g. entrepreneurship, sports business) ranked as high as first in the world. During his tenure as dean the college broke records for student and faculty quality, research and teaching productivity, media visibility, and funds raised ($50+ million in four years).  He developed and oversaw construction of the largest privately-funded academic building in state history--ahead of schedule and under budget.

Romero's background combines think-tank economics, corporate strategy, and high-level public policy. After working for most of the 1980s as a research economist and defense policy specialist at California's RAND Corporation, in 1990 he was named director of strategic planning for United Technologies Corp. (UTC). While serving in that job, Romero advised the UTC chairman, George David, on new market opportunities, acquisitions, and divestitures. He played a role in UTC's turnaround in the early 1990's, helping convert its worst performing division into its second most profitable.

In 1991 Romero was tapped by newly-elected Gov. Pete Wilson to become California's chief economist. He served as troubleshooter on business and economic operations for Gov. Wilson until 1999, when term limits caused him to leave office. Romero was the author and lead implementer of key improvements in California's business climate. These reforms transformed California's recession-plagued economy in the mid-1990s: the state went from last in the nation in job growth to nearly twice the national average?from losing 1,000 jobs per day to gaining 1,000. 

During his tenure in California's Governor's office, Romero served as acting director of the state Office of Planning and Research (OPR), the Governor's think tank. He transformed OPR from a moribund backwater into a powerful source of policy ideas and analysis.  He also served as Wilson's national security adviser. As Chief Deputy Cabinet Secretary, he oversaw all state agencies that regulated or promoted business ($5B budget and 40,000+ employees). He was Executive Director of the California Managed Health Care Improvement Task Force, which designed an overhaul of state regulation of the HMO industry. Gov. Wilson summarized his role: "If it's big and complicated, we give it to Romero and he fixes it."

Romero has emphasized business and government collaboration by integrating business strategies into public policy. For example, he led the design of California's efforts to open telecommunications and utility monopolies to competition. Likewise, he improved public sector performance by opening government monopolies to competition, saving taxpayers more than $10 million per year. He remains active in public policy through fellowships with the Hoover Institution and the Pacific Research Institute, through consulting to California businesses and governor's office, and by publishing frequent opinion articles in major periodicals. From 2002 -2005 he served as a director (and chair of the corporate governance committee) of Lithia Motors (NYSE: LAD), a Fortune 500 auto retailer, where he promulgated the firm's first corporate governance standards. Romero also serves on several private sector advisory boards, including the GLG hedge fund group.

Dr. Romero earned a Ph.D. (1988) and M.A. (1985) in Policy Analysis (mixture of economics and applied mathematics) with Distinction from the RAND Graduate School, and a B.A. in Economics and Political Science from Cornell University (1983). He has published numerous research papers on a range of strategy and policy topics, including nuclear arms control, conventional forces, command and control, selecting Presidential advisers, business regulation, tax policy, international trade, international economic growth, health reform, the Federal budget, and crisis management.
He is co-author of five books:

  • The De-Escalation of Nuclear Crises (1992).
  • California: Problemos Economicos, Sociales, y Politicos (1995).
  • The Northridge Earthquake, 1994 (1996).
  • California Policy Options 2000 (2001).
  • and How Many Illegal Immigrants Are There in the U.S.? (2007).

He has taught graduate or undergraduate courses at UCLA, USC, Pepperdine, the U. of Oregon, and in the California State University system.    Philip Romero's public policy interests include international security, economic policy and government budgets, how governments compete for business investment and retention, on government's role in creating conditions that nurture durable market advantage for resident businesses, and on introducing competitive forces into the delivery of public services. 

He has consulted on strategy issues to scores of major companies, as well as for the White House and for California, Illinois and Oregon governor's offices.  He serves on two Oregon state commissions: the Governor's Council of Economic Advisers, and the Comprehensive Revenue Restructuring Task Force, appointed by two Democratic governors.  Romero is also a principal in Forward Observer, a Sacramento-based consulting firm which designs and analyzes public policy initiatives for business.  Forward Observer's policies have won every election they have contested.

  Dr. Romero is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a recipient of its Ford Foundation Economics International Affairs Fellowship.
He has also been a member of two states' Governor's Councils of Economic Advisers (appointed by governors of both parties), and a founding member of the Pacific Council on International Policy. In addition, he is a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Stanford's Hoover Institution, a Senior Fellow in Business and Economic Studies at the Pacific Research Institute, and on the governing board of the California Legislature's Bipartisan enter for Research on Policy.   A prolific author of newspaper opinion articles, his work has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Sacramento Bee, Portland Oregonian, and many other dailies. 

He has been interviewed by virtually every major news outlet, including the Investor's Business Daily, the New York Times, the Economist, Business Week, Wall Street Journal, Associated Press and United Press International, as well as major television and radio networks including the BBC, PBS, CNBC, NPR, and Bloomberg.  He also serves as a columnist and member of Brainstorm magazine's editorial board (the Northwest's premier public affairs/business magazine).  An experienced public speaker, he made 100 speeches per year from 1992-2004 (mostly on public policy for the economy and businesses.)  A list of his publications and major media appearances is attached.