January 19, 2017

Ben Carson to be Secretary of Housing and Urban Development

  • On December 5, President-elect Trump announced his intention to nominate Benjamin Carson to serve as secretary of Housing and Urban Development.  
  • Dr. Carson has had an extremely successful career across multiple disciplines, including as a neurosurgeon and author. 
  • Dr. Carson has demonstrated that he has the intellect and leadership skills to lead HUD.  


Benjamin Carson was born in Detroit in 1951. He graduated from Yale University with a Bachelor of Arts in psychology in 1973 and earned a Doctor of Medicine from the University of Michigan in 1977. In 1984, at age 33, he became director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions in Baltimore, and co-director of the Johns Hopkins Cleft and Craniofacial Center in 1991.

Dr. Carson has received dozens of honorary degrees, awards, and honors. From 2004 to 2008, he served on the President’s Council on Bioethics. In 1994, Carson and his wife started the Carson Scholars Fund, which has provided more than 7,300 scholarships. It also encompasses the Reading Room program, which has placed 160 reading rooms across America, mainly in schools for low-income children.

Senate Action

On January 12, the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs held a hearing on the nomination. The committee is scheduled to vote on the nomination on January 24.


According to the opening statement by Chairman Crapo, Dr. Carson “has demonstrated a fervent intensity for improving the lives of his fellow Americans, and his intellect, leadership, and life experiences are unique, valuable assets for leading an agency like HUD.”

During his hearing, Dr. Carson discussed how his personal and professional background have prepared him to run HUD. He stated that he plans to go on a listening tour to learn more about the department. Dr. Carson also said that, if confirmed, he plans to make better use of the private sector and take a “holistic approach” with respect to people in need.  

Issue Tags: Housing, Senate