May 12, 2014
North Carolina State Treasure
Janet Cowell is North Carolina’s popularly elected Treasurer and is the first woman to hold the office. With over 20 years of private and public-sector financial leadership, Cowell oversees more than 80 billion dollars in pension investments for the more than 875,000 teachers, firefighters, and public employees in North Carolina. As Treasurer, she manages the 32nd largest public pension in the world.
While many public plans are struggling to meet financial obligations, North Carolina’s pension system is ranked 2nd in the nation. In 2013, Treasurer Cowell was named one of the top 25 public pension executives in the world by Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute, and is one of only two United States fund managers to rank in the top 25 globally.
Under Cowell’s executive leadership, North Carolina is one of only nine states in the country to earn a AAA bond rating by all three rating agencies – the ultimate good housekeeping seal of approval for fiscal strength. North Carolina also has the most AAA-rated local governments of any state, which keeps borrowing costs for taxpayers low for schools, roads, and other needed infrastructure.
Cowell is a member of the State Board of Education and a champion for improvements in education, including financial education. Because of her efforts, North Carolina’s Kindergarten through 12th grade students began receiving financial education as part of their curriculum in 2012.
Recently, Cowell stepped up to oversee the State Health Plan, ensuring access to affordable health care for more than 650,000 North Carolina families. The perfect spokesperson for the healthy, active lifestyles that the Health Plan promotes – when she’s not in the office, Janet can be found running, biking on our state’s beautiful trails, or occasionally completing military-style endurance trainings for charity.
Cowell is a Wharton School of Business alumna, the Chair of the State Banking Commission, and recently chosen as an Aspen Institute Fellow. Over the past year, she has been featured on CNBC, FOX Business, Bloomberg TV and others for her solid fiscal leadership, and for North Carolina’s unique financial successes among the national picture.
Now in her 10th year of elected office, and with the nation facing unprecedented economic challenges, Cowell continues the conservative debt management practices and solid economic development policies that keep North Carolina in secure financial standing.
She is proud to serve the citizens of North Carolina as State Treasurer and remains committed to working each day to build and maintain a fiscally strong and prosperous North Carolina, and a brighter future for all who call North Carolina home.