Managing Director, Economic Policy
Expertise: Federal tax policy, the federal budget
Michael Linden is the Managing Director for Economic Policy at American Progress. Michael’s work focuses on the federal budget and the medium- and long-term deficits. He has co-authored numerous reports on the causes of and solutions to our fiscal challenges, including “Path to Balance,” which first proposed primary balance as an intermediate goal, and “A First Step,” which included a detailed plan for achieving that goal. Michael also coined the phrase “deficit peacock.” He is a frequent guest on CNBC, and his work has been cited by The New York Times, The Washington Post, and National Public Radio, among others.
Prior to joining American Progress, he worked at First Focus, a national children’s advocacy organization, serving as director and then senior director of tax and budget policy. While at First Focus, Michael authored both the inaugural and the second book in the Children’s Budget series. Michael also wrote several reports on recession-induced child poverty, the last of which spurred the state legislature of Connecticut to establish a special task force on children in the recession.
Michael earned his master’s degree in public policy from the University of California at Berkeley. While in the Bay Area, he consulted for a variety of clients including the Oakland Police Department, the Contra Costa Unified School District, and for then-mayor of Oakland Jerry Brown’s successful campaign for state attorney general.
Michael was born and grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, before attending college at Brown University. In addition to his hometown, Michael has lived in Munich, Providence, Chicago, Oakland, and now resides in Washington, D.C. with his wife and daughter.