Biography and History

Eugene M. Becker was born on September 1, 1930 in St. Paul, Minnesota. He graduated from Colgate University in 1952. He received an MA in art history from the University of Chicago in 1953 and a Ph.D. in art and archaeology from Princeton University in 1959. He also studied as a Fulbright scholar at the University of Paris from 1953 to 1954, and from 1954 to 1956 served with the Army Fifth Infantry Division in Germany and as a foreign press analyst for the United States European Command Headquarters near Paris.

Becker's career spanned both finance and government. In finance, he held executive positions in municipal finance (bond sales and public power investment banking) in various investment firms, including the First National City Bank and Kidder Peabody. He also worked as the director of information in municipal securities at the Investment Bankers Association of America. In government, Becker directed research on New York City finances during John Lindsay's mayoral campaign in 1965, becoming Director of the Budget for New York City in 1966. In this capacity, Becker was responsible for drafting a report on the city's fiscal crisis, preparing and executing spending plans, labor negotiations, and serving as a member on the Board of Estimates. In 1967, he was appointed Assistant Secretary of the United States Army for Financial Management by President Johnson and continued to serve in that capacity during the Nixon administration. He was twice awarded the Army's Distinguished Civilian Service Award during his tenure with the Army which ended in 1972, when he returned to the corporate world.

Becker became Chairman of the Advisory Board of The Mentor Group in 1989. The Mentor Group is a non-profit, publicly supported research institute focusing on constitutional, legal-economic comparative studies. Central to the development of these studies has been the founding of the Forum for US-EU Legal-Economic Affairs (1989- ), the Forum for Russian Legal-Economic Affairs (1993-2000), and the Central European Forum for Legal-Economic Affairs (2004- ). Becker co-founded the Forum for US-EU Legal-Economic Affairs with Thomas Kosmo, the originator of the concept and president of The Mentor Group. As co-founder, Becker has been responsible for corporate fundraising and relations with senior American and European corporate executives and has co-shared agenda planning with Kosmo. Becker also served as an advisor to the Forum for Russian Legal-Economic Affairs until it was terminated in 2000 and as an advisor to the Central European Forum for Legal-Economic Affairs.

Becker has also been a trustee of the Carnegie Hall Corporation (1966-1992) and a trustee of Manhattanville College (1975-1989). As of 2007, he continues to serve as Chairman of the Advisory Board of The Mentor Group and as an advisor to its Central European Forum for Legal-Economic Affairs.

Source: From the finding aid for MC125

  • Eugene M. Becker Papers. 1944-2013 (inclusive), 1965-1972 (bulk), 1993-1998 (bulk).

    Call Number: MC125

    The Eugene M. Becker Papers consist primarily of planning documents, position papers, articles, addresses, correspondence, and scrapbooks which document Becker's career in public service, including Budget Director of New York City under Mayor John Lindsay, Assistant Secretary of the United States Army during the Johnson and Nixon administrations, and Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Mentor Group, a research institute focusing on constitutional, legal-economic comparative studies and sponsor of the Forum for US-EU Legal-Economic Affairs, the Forum for Russian Legal-Economic Affairs, and the Central European Forum for Legal-Economic Affairs.

  • Eugene M. Becker Papers. 1944-2013 (inclusive), 1965-1972 (bulk), 1993-1998 (bulk).

    Call Number: MC125

    The Eugene M. Becker Papers consist primarily of planning documents, position papers, articles, addresses, correspondence, and scrapbooks which document Becker's career in public service, including Budget Director of New York City under Mayor John Lindsay, Assistant Secretary of the United States Army during the Johnson and Nixon administrations, and Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Mentor Group, a research institute focusing on constitutional, legal-economic comparative studies and sponsor of the Forum for US-EU Legal-Economic Affairs, the Forum for Russian Legal-Economic Affairs, and the Central European Forum for Legal-Economic Affairs.