March 28, 2017

Mnuchin out of touch with A.I.'s job-destroying potential, billionaire says

View the full article on CNBC here.

Robots Will Steal U.S. Jobs Warns Billionaire Investor Jeff Greene

View the full article on Fox Business here.

March 27, 2017

Jeff Greene institute to host 'Managing the Disruption' conference in Palm Beach


By Marcia Heroux Pounds

Sun Sentinel


Billionaire Jeff Greene said it’s time that business and government leaders consider how to manage the technological disruption that is destroying jobs as we know them.

Through his non-profit, The Greene Institute, he’s gathering speakers from around the world of politics and technology to address the issue.

Confirmed speakers for “Managing the Disruption” conference, April 2 to 3, include: New York Times’ columnist Thomas Friedman, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers, former United Kingdom Prime Minister David Cameron and Google’s chief futurist Ray Kurzweil. The conference is being held at Greene’s newly acquired hotel, Tideline Ocean Resort & Spa, Palm Beach.

General admission tickets cost $1,750.

Greene, a successful developer and investor in South Florida, said he has been “lucky” in building his fortune, pegged at $3.4 billion by Forbes magazine’s 2017 list of the “World’s Billionaires.”

“I can see what’s happening in the economy today,” said Greene, referring to the effect on middle-class jobs from artificial intelligence, machine learning, big data and robotics.

“I think what Donald Trump is doing [to create jobs] is great,” Greene said. “But he’s missing the issue -- the role of technology and disruption is enormous. And it’s going to get worse and worse.”

“All around us we can see technology is wreaking havoc with the workforce,” Greene said, pointing to Uber’s disruption of the taxi business, as one example. “You can’t stop this technology, you have to embrace it.”

Greene said he hopes the conference will raise awareness. But, even knowing President Trump and being a member of his Mar-a-Lago on Palm Beach, hasn’t gotten the president’s attention on the issue — yet.

“I saw him a couple weeks ago at dinner….But he has not reached out to me and asked me to address this,” Green said. “He should be thinking about it. It’s long-range planning — what the world’s going to look like and what we can do about it.”

In an op-ed article in February for The Hill, Greene wrote: “We’re headed into an era in which Budweiser delivers beer in self-driving trucks and Amazon runs convenience stores with no cashiers. Already, jobs in factories and farms have gone from employing 60 percent of the workforce a century ago to just 10 percent in 2014….

“All industries will face a crippling pressure to automate, leaving a significant portion of the population struggling to survive economically.”

“Unless we take action, the combination of technological trends and our ongoing failure to keep pace with competing industrialized countries in education will only accelerate the systemic fractures in our economy. This will destroy the middle class,” he wrote.

While Greene, 62, now lives on Palm Beach, when young he was forced to be “street smart,” he recalled. His father lost his job in the textile industry and died of a heart attack at 51. He worked as a busboy at The Breakers resort in Palm Beach and sold circus tickets to raise money to attend Harvard Business School.

Since then, Greene has made millions through real estate development and shorting sub-prime mortgages during the financial crisis. In 2010, he was a Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate against Rep. Kendrick Meek, who defeated him in a primary election.

He has since opened The Greene School in West Palm Beach, which works to “prepare students to analyze situations, make decisions, solve problems and communicate effectively in a dynamic world,” according to the school’s Facebook page.

In South Florida, he’s developing One West Palm, a 30-story, two-tower project with 200 all-suite hotel rooms, 327 condos and 200,000 square feet of Class A office space. It is located at 550 N Quadrille Blvd. in West Palm Beach.

The billionaire said he wants to do his part to create a better world for his three children. He hopes the conference will generate ideas on how to make technology work for people, to make their lives better.

Greene said he would like to see technology enable shorter work weeks for people, allowing them to spend more time with family, helping people drive safer, buy more affordable houses, and use renewable energy instead of heating oil.

“We need to get the cost of living down for the average person,” he said.

March 3, 2017

‘Managing the Disruption’ Conference Brings World-Class Debate to Florida on the Massive Threat Technology Poses to Millions of Jobs

Google’s Ray Kurzweil, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, Former U.S. Treasury Secretary Larry Summers, Former U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Thomas Friedman, Larry Kudlow and Star Jones Among Confirmed Speakers


PALM BEACH, FL – The Greene Institute announced today that it will host a world-class conference of leaders and innovators in Palm Beach on April 2nd and 3rd focused on the massive and severe disruption looming for millions of jobs due to technological advancements that will challenge business and government leaders and upend the economy. The ‘Managing the Disruption’ conference will bring together visionary thinkers like Google’s Ray Kurzweil and author Thomas Friedman with leaders like former U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, along with others from academia, the nonprofit sector, business, and government to identify solutions for this crisis. The Greene Institute announced the conference in an ad today in the Palm Beach Daily News.

“We can no longer apply band aids to the gushing wound our economy is about to face,” said Jeff Greene, founder of the Greene Institute and host of the conference. “Technological advancements like artificial intelligence, machine learning, big data and robots are leading to a major disruption that will result in an unprecedented era of job destruction.”

Volatility at home and abroad with the rise of nationalism and populism caused by growing economic uncertainty are perceived as the new normal. Speakers at the conference are at the forefront of this debate, including Ray Kurzweil who has been described as “the ultimate thinking machine” by Forbes and is considered one of the world’s leading inventors, thinkers, and futurists, with a 30-year track record of accurate predictions. Columnist and author Thomas L. Friedman, who explores the dizzying acceleration of change and its impact in his book, “Thank You for Being Late,” will deliver a keynote address at the conference.

“I started out as a busboy and worked my way up,” added Greene. “I know firsthand the struggles hard-working people face every day, as well as the trends taking hold at every level of our economy. We’ve only seen the tip of the iceberg. What globalization did to the blue-collar workforce over thirty to forty years, artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics and big data will do to the white-collar workforce in the next five to ten. This is a crisis.”

Greene wrote an op-ed for The Hill newspaper in Washington, DC to demand attention to this issue among the nation’s lawmakers and the new Administration. You can read it HERE.

The conference will be held at the Tideline Ocean Resort & Spa in Palm Beach, Florida. The Greene Institute, a nonprofit dedicated to finding, developing, and promoting strategies for increasing upward mobility in America, held the first conference of this kind in December 2015.

Participants at ‘Managing the Disruption’ include:

  • Business leaders looking for ways their organizations can adapt and prepare their workforce.
  • Educators seeking to understand the constantly changing role of education in the new economy.
  • Foundations looking to support their mission to combat economic volatility and inequality.
  • Nonprofits, NGOs and policy-makers who want to collaborate with stakeholders to define much-needed policy changes.
  • Consultants who can help organizations navigate the seismic shifts in a wide range of markets.

Confirmed speakers include:

Thomas FriedmanNew York Times columnist and author
Chris Christie, Governor of New Jersey
Kimberly Bryant, founder, Black Girls Code

Arne Duncan, former Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education
Larry Summers, former Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Treasury
Ray Kurzweil, futurist and a Director of Engineering at Google
Larry Kudlow, economist and CNBC Senior Contributor
David Paterson, former Governor of New York

Lois Frankel, U.S. Congresswoman, Florida’s 21st District
John Sculley, former CEO, Apple Computer
Star Jones, journalist and advocate for diversity and women
Michael Cembalest, Chairman of Market and Investment Strategy, J.P. Morgan Asset Management

Anthony Scaramucci, founder and former Co-Managing Director, Skybridge Capital


Media Contact:

Mark Paustenbach