Two economists with graduate studies in Cambridge and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a lawyer considered one of the most influential members of Congress and with a PhD from Oxford, plus the heir of a banking empire, the largest in Brazil, and philanthropist, are identified as the closest aides and advisors of Marina Silva, with increasing chances of becoming Brazil’s next president in October.
Eduardo Giannetti da Fonseca, born in Belo Horizonte in 1957, is an economist and author educated at the University of Sao Paulo, with specialization in Social Science, Economics, Administration, and Accounting.
He received his doctorate in economics from the University of Cambridge, where he was also a professor from 1984 to 1987. From 1988 to 2001 he taught at the FEA/USP (School of Economics, Business and Accounting of the University of São Paulo). He is currently a full-time professor at Insper, the Teaching and Research Institute of Sao Paulo.
Mauricio Rands (born 1961) is a lawyer from the Federal University of Pernambuco and a specialist of Labor Law from the University of Bari in Italy, and holds a PhD from the University of Oxford.
He started politics in 1981, when he joined PMDB, Brazil’s leading political party, but in 1989 crossed over to the current ruling Workers Pary (PT). In 1989 he became Vice president of Brazil’s Lawyers Organization, (OAB) Pernambuco branch and in 2000 federal advisor of OAB. In 2001 Rands was named head of legal affairs of the city of Recife, where he created City-Justice, which decentralized courts and took legal aid to the poor neighborhoods of the city.
The achievement received the 2003 prize to the leading government and citizens performance.
In 2002 Rands was elected to Congress, re-elected in 2006, with a 50% increase in votes. In the Lower House he was chairman of the Constitution and Justice committee, deputy head of PT in Congress from 2005 to 2007 and head of PT benches in 2008. This same year and for the fifth time running he was chosen by his colleagues as one of the most influential members of Congress.
In 2010, he became member of the Foreign Affairs and Defense committees and in 2011 Secretary of State for Pernambuco during the second period of governor Eduardo Campos.
In 2012 his aspiration was to become mayor of Recife, but PT opted for another candidate, so he resigned from the ruling Pary.
One of the books he published and considered a text book for law students is “Labor Relations and the New Unionism in Contemporary Brazil” (1999), and another in 2010 is “The Lula era”.
André Pinheiro de Lara Resende (Rio do Janeiro 1951) is an economist and son of a famous writer Otto Lara Resende. He studied economics at the Catholic University of Rio and later graduated with a PhD from MIT.
He has a long experience in banking, and even founded his own Banco Matrix. He was later a member of Brazil’s Central Bank board of directors and was involved in the team that created the new currency and monetary policy, Plan Real, which helped beat hyper inflation and later stabilized prices.
Lara Resende was Special advisor to former president Fernando Henrique Cardoso and later head of the BNDES, Brazil’s development bank which has an annual turnover greater than the World Bank.
Lara Resende later had problems with the courts for some shady dealings during the privatization of Brazil’s telecoms in 1998. He was absolved of all charges in 2009. He is currently economic advisor to Marina Silva.
Finally one of Marina Silva’s biggest backers is banking heir and philanthropist Maria Alice Setubal, more commonly referred to as Neca, who is also acting as a campaign coordinator for the candidate.
A member of one of Brazil’s most distinguished banking dynasties, Setubal is a shareholder of Sao Paulo-based conglomerate Itausa, which has interests in finance, real estate and a range of industries. Itausa also controls Itaú Unibanco, the largest bank in the southern hemisphere with total assets of 500 billion dollars.
Setubal’s stake in Itausa is worth some 370 million, about 11% of her family’s total stake in the conglomerate, which is worth 3.3 billion as of May, when the Setubals placed 12th on the list of the 15 richest families in Brazil.
Maria Alice Setubal graduated from the University of Sao Paulo (USP) where she studied social sciences. She also holds a doctorate in psychology and a masters in political sciences. In 2005, she and her family started a foundation named after her late mother, Tide Setubal, which aims to help communities in Brazil alleviate poverty through sustainable development programs.
She is the only daughter of the late Brazilian banker Olavo Setubal, who acted as chairman of Itaú until his death in 2008 and was Brazil’s foreign affairs minister from 1985 to 1986 as well as serving as mayor of Sao Paulo from 1975 to 1979. Setubal’s brother, Roberto Egydio Setubal, is the current CEO of Itaú Unibanco.
In a Silva government, Neca Setubal, is expected to play a big role, possibly as a minister or as a chief of staff.