Russell Cornell Leffingwell

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Russell Cornell Leffingwell circa 1913

Russell Cornell Leffingwell (1878–1960) was an American banker who led the Council on Foreign Relations from 1944 until 1953. From 1944 to 1946, he served as president of the Council, and from 1946 to 1953, he served as the organization's first chairman. He was also a trustee of Carnegie Corporation from 1923 to 1959. His banking career, which focused on international lending, started when he joined J.P. Morgan in 1923, and he retired as chairman of the company in 1950.[1][2]

In reference to the economic problems of the early 1930s, he is reported to have said: "The remedy is for people to stop watching the ticker, listening to the radio, drinking bootleg gin, and dancing to jazz... and return to the old economics and prosperity based on saving and working."[3]


  1. ^ "Died". Time. October 17, 1960. Retrieved 2008-07-28. Russell Cornell Leffingwell, 82, former board chairman of J. P. Morgan & Co.; of cancer; in Manhattan. A graduate of Yale ('99) and the Columbia Law School ('02), where he edited the Law Review, Leffingwell practiced corporation law until World War I, when he was appointed Assistant Secretary of the Treasury. After that his interests turned increasingly to international banking. He joined Morgan in 1923, was instrumental in floating loans for the postwar recovery of Europe's economy.
  2. ^ Ron Chernow, The House of Morgan, Grove Press, 2001.
  3. ^ Peter Bernstein, The Wedding of The Waters, Norton, 2005, p. 230