CHICAGO – Paul Volcker, who helped tame runaway inflation during the 1980s during two terms as chairman of the Federal Reserve, has agreed to lead a new White House economic advisory committee for President-elect Barack Obama.
Mr. Obama made the announcement on Wednesday morning at his third news conference in as many days. The public appearances by the president-elect are intended to show Americans that his team is focusing on resolving the financial crisis.
Mr. Volcker, 81, has been providing Mr. Obama advice on the economy for months. After briefly considering him for Treasury secretary, Mr. Obama instead asked Mr. Volcker to lead the President’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board, a panel comprised of officials from a variety of business sectors. The group is tasked with providing Mr. Obama advice for how to jumpstart the economy and stabilize the financial markets.

Austan Goolsbee, a University of Chicago economist who was a leading economic adviser to the Obama presidential campaign, will be the top staff member of the advisory board, Mr. Obama announced.
Mr. Volcker was appointed chairman of the Federal Reserve in August 1979 as President Jimmy Carter fought to battle inflation. Mr. Volcker, who served in that position until 1987, often used tactics that were unpopular as he unleashed interest rates. Criticized at the time for causing a recession, he later was praised for his efforts.