About Us


The Education Finance Institute (EFI) was formed in 2018 by Tony James, Executive Vice Chairman of The Blackstone Group, and Jim Runcie, former Chief Operating Officer of Federal Student Aid (FSA), the student lending arm of the federal government. Mr. James and Mr. Runcie believe strongly in the benefit of obtaining a college education and have seen first-hand the transformative impact of higher education on students’ lives. They have also witnessed both positive and negative outcomes of student loans. For some students, federal loans provide a pathway to higher education. While for other borrowers, the insufficient repayment flexibility and support has resulted in lifelong problems. 

Our Background


The Education Finance Institute (EFI) 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization focused on building student-centered solutions to make college affordable and to reduce the negative long-term economic impact of student loan debt on students, families and our economy as well. 

We are dedicated to the following principles as we carry out our mission:

  • Solutions for financing higher education must first prioritize students’ interests.

  • Financial support for education must align with students’ future success.

  • Investment in students must support equal access to educational opportunity. 

  • Students deserve a sustainable solution that is scalable and broadly adoptable.


New York:

601 Lexington Avenue Fl 17,

New York, NY 10022

District of Columbia:

1301  Pennsylvania Avenue, Suite 520

Washington,  DC 20004

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©2019 Education Finance Institute