April 8, 2008
Rev. David Beckmann, Economist and Author
A Lutheran minister and an economist, Rev. David Beckmann earned his Master of Divinity from Christ Seminary in St. Louis, Master of Science in Economics from the London School of Economics, and his undergraduate degree from Yale University. He has received honorary degrees from Villanova University, the Berkeley Divinity School at Yale, and Capital University.
Rev. Beckman is fluent in Spanish. He has written many books and articles. His books include: Grace at the Table: Ending Hunger in God's World, Transforming the Politics of Hunger and Friday Morning Reflections at the World Bank.
He was called by his church to be a "missionary-economist," connecting the Christian faith and moral teaching to economic life. He served in a church-supported development program in rural Bangladesh from 1975-76. He then moved to the World Bank for 15 years, where he played a prominent role in the Bank's heightened focus on poverty reduction and fostered greater collaboration between the Bank and grassroots groups that work for poor people.
Rev. Beckman served for several years on the board of Bread for the World before becoming president of the organization in 1991. Bread for the World is a grassroots, Christian citizens' movement against hunger. Its 56,000 members and member churches urge the U.S. government to take actions to reduce both domestic and international hunger. Rev. Beckman is also president of Bread for the World Institute, which does research and education on hunger.
He is also the founder and president of the Alliance to End Hunger, which engages diverse institutions in building the public will to end hunger. The Alliance includes corporations, unions, foundations, charities, and governmental and U. N. institutions.