Charles L. Schultze, an economist who was President Lyndon B. Johnson’s budget director and President Jimmy Carter’s chief economic adviser, died at his home in Washington. He was 91.
Mr. Schultze spent nearly his whole career working on national economic and fiscal policy, either from the inside as a government economic adviser or from the outside as a university professor and research fellow.
Charles Louis Schultze was born across the Potomac from Washington, in Alexandria, Va., on Dec. 12, 1924. A 1942 graduate of Gonzaga College High School in Washington, he was at Georgetown University when he interrupted his education to enlist in the Army in 1943. He served for three years in the infantry and was awarded a Purple Heart and Bronze Star.
After his service, he finished his bachelor’s degree at Georgetown and earned a master’s there as well, both in economics. He was awarded a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Maryland in 1960.
Mr. Schultze served on the staff of the Council of Economic Advisers from 1952 to 1959, then left to teach at Indiana University. President John F. Kennedy responded by hiring Mr. Schultze as deputy budget director. He was promoted to run the Bureau of the Budget by President Johnson in 1965. At one point he was criticized as having helped Robert S. McNamara, Johnson’s secretary of defense, obscure the rising costs of the war in Vietnam in the 1967 federal budget.
In 1968, the year the Republicans retook the White House, Mr. Schultze returned to teaching and became a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, the liberal-leaning research and policy studies organization.
President Carter chose the blunt, gregarious Mr. Schultze for chief economic adviser at the beginning of his administration in 1977, Returning to Brookings after Mr. Carter failed to win re-election, Mr. Schultze wrote frequently on budgetary and economic issues.
Mr. Schultze was president of the American Economic Association in 1984 and had been a senior fellow emeritus at Brookings since 1996.
Mr. Schultze married Rita Irene Hertzog in 1947. She died in 2014. He is survived by their daughters, Karen Hoffman, Lynn Jones, Kathleen Schultze, Carol Kasunic and Mary Chris Weintrob; a son, Kevin; 16 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.