Professor Milton Friedman was born July 31, 1912 in Brooklyn, New York to a working-class family of Jewish immigrants from Ukraine. He earned his BA at Rutgers and his MA in economics at the University of Chicago in 1933 and a Ph.D. from Columbia in 1946. Friedman then taught economics at the University of Chicago for the next 31 years from 1946 until 1977. He is considered to be the founder of the "Chicago School" of economists who specialize in free-market theory and applications.
In 1976, while living in Hyde Park, Friedman was informed by a letter from the King of Sweden that he had been awarded the Nobel Prize for Economics for his analysis of monetary history. It was an exciting week for Chicago because Chicago author Saul Bellow also won the Nobel Prize for Literature. Milton and his wife, Prof. Rose Friedman, had a talent for making the study of economics undertandable to average students in their book and PBS-TV series called Free to Choose. After their many years in Chicago, MIlton and Rose Friedman settled again in 1977 on Taylor Street in San Francisco and both had affiliations with the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. As a monetarist, Milton Friedman has often been a critic of Federal Reserve over the course of its history for failures in economic policy which he thinks made recessions worse and slowed recoveries. Friedman was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1988 and received the National Medal of Science the same year. In 1998, the University of Chicago Press published the memoirs of Milton and Rose called Two Lucky People. During his more than three decades in Chicago, Milton Friedman was a great credit to the intellectual life of Illinois and the world.