Erskine Bowles was born and raised in Greensboro, North Carolina, and is an accomplished businessman and political figure. Bowles is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and holds a Masters of Business Administration from Columbia Business School. Following graduation, Bowles worked for Morgan Stanley in New York City. Erskine helped launch the investment firm Bowles, Hollowell and Conner in Charlotte, where he and his wife Crandall raised their children Sam, Annie and Bill.
Bowles most recently served as President of the University of North Carolina system from 2005 to 2010. In 2010, President Obama appointed Bowles co-chair of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform with former Wyoming Senator, Alan K. Simpson. Prior to this, Bowles served as director of the Small Business Administration, and later served as White House Chief of Staff for Bill Clinton from 1997-1998.