Distinguished Leadership Award for Internationals

2013 Recipients

Dr. SaracogluRüşdü Saraçoğlu, Turkey
Ph.D., Economics (1980)

Dr. Rüşdü Saraçoğlu is an accomplished economist who has contributed greatly in government and private sectors in Turkey and across nations. He is a proud alumnus of the College of Liberal Arts and the Department of Economics. Currently, he is the Chairman of Allianz Insurance Turkey and Alliance Life & Pension Turkey.

After earning his doctorate degree, Dr. Saraçoğlu went on to work at Boston College and at the International Monetary Fund where he caught the attention of Turkey’s Prime Minister Oczal. The Prime Minster later appointed Dr. Saraçoğlu as Governor of the Bank of Turkey where his administration set the stage for the subsequent stabilization of the Turkish currency.

Dr. Saraçoğlu was elected as a member of the parliament in 1995 and served a term as Minister of the Economy in the 53rd Government of the Republic of Turkey. After a successful career in politics, Dr. Saraçoğlu joined the largest Turkish conglomerate, Koç Holding, Inc., as the President of Finance Group where he initiated major partnerships and acquisitions. He also served as the Chairman of the Board at Koçbank and Yapı Kredi Bank.

Dr. Saraçoğlu serves as a member of the Board of Tekfen Holding, the Aspen Institute Italia, the Trilateral Commission, and the Carnegie Economic Reform Network. Dr. Saraçoğlu’s involvement as an advisory board member of the Heller-Hurwicz Economics Institute (HHEI) at the University of Minnesota has been invaluable as he helped HHEI think in more global terms, which resulted in an enhanced reputation. He invests both in the work of HHEI and the Department of Economics by supporting student dissertations through the creation of a fund named the Saraçoğlu-Sargent Fellowship.

He has the intellect and firepower to be a successful academician but has become a successful, practical statesman and businessman who contributes to making his country better. In naming Dr. Saraçoğlu a recipient of the Distinguished Leadership Award for Internationals, the selection committee cited his outstanding success in setting professional standards, initiating reforms, and achieving economic and financial stability in the Turkish economy.