After more than 23 years of leadership and 36 years of service, Lawrence J. Mone has announced that he will step down as president from the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research (MI) in 2019. In 1977, Sir Antony Fisher founded the International Center for Economic Policy Studies (ICEPS), which was later renamed the Manhattan Institute. MI is an Atlas Network partner that has influenced many of New York City’s mayors, and won Atlas Network’s 2016 Sir Antony Fisher International Memorial Award during Mone’s tenure.
"Larry has been a quiet hero behind the Institute's many successes,” said the Institute's Chairman Paul Singer. “He has always allowed the research, the ideas, and the scholars to take the spotlight. Larry never wanted to add to the noise; he looked for the moments, the places, and the openings where good policy was needed and where the Institute could truly turn intellect into influence. The Institute and the world of ideas will miss him greatly."
Under Mone’s leadership, MI has had a hand in the rebirth of New York City. Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani once said, "[If] there was ... a charge of plagiarism for political programs, I’d probably be in a lot of trouble because I think we plagiarized most of them, if not all of them, from the pages of the City Journal and from the thinking and analysis of the Manhattan Institute." After the terrorist attacks on 9/11, the Institute launched a new policy division to advise the New York Police Department during its development of a counterterrorism strategy. To address the city’s crime rate, the Institute published Fixing Broken Windows in 1996, which brought the work of James Q. Wilson and George L. Kelling to a broader audience, and argued that addressing small crimes and social disorder can stunt the growth of criminal environments. MI has also led the charge for school choice, and, in 2017, launched a project to identify ways to finance charter schools in New York.
“For all of the Institute’s accomplishments thus far, it is manifestly the case that the work of promoting the cause of free markets, free societies, and the rule of law is not complete,” wrote Mone in his letter to the board of MI. “Sharp turns towards statism and government overreach at City Hall and in Albany threaten the gains of the last generation. The danger is real across the range of issues, but I believe it is particularly acute with respect to our fiscal sobriety, the future of economic growth, the maintenance of law and order, and the prospects of education reform.”
Mone joined MI in 1982 as a public-policy specialist. He later served as project manager and then vice president before becoming the Institute's fourth president in 1995. The Institute's Board of Trustees has formed a committee to select Mone's replacement.
"For 36 years, it's been my honor and privilege to work alongside MI's brilliant scholars and dedicated staff,” said Mone. “I will miss the daily routine of innovative thinking, honest intellectual curiosity, and dedication to solving real problems. The Institute's goal has always been to persuade people that ideas matter — and presented carefully, ideas can ultimately change the world. That is not an ideological position; it's the philosophical underpinning of the Institute — past, present, and future."