Michael Peterson is the son of billionaire of Peter G. Peterson, founder of the centrist Peter G. Peterson Foundation, which seeks to reduce the national debt and federal budget deficit.  After his father’s passing, Michael Peterson has worked as the CEO and board chair of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation. 
Michael Peterson cofounded a major telecommunications company, a private investment firm, and has worked in several high-level corporate finance positions. He has also sat on the board of and been a member of several center-left economic and geopolitical nonprofit organizations. 
Michael Peterson is the son of billionaire Peter G. Peterson, who also created the centrist Peter G. Peterson Foundation. Michael Peterson was considered as the “day-to-day leader” of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation prior to his father’s passing in 2018 and made Inside Philanthropy’s list of the “Most Powerful Heirs in Philanthropy.”  Since then, he has assumed the role of CEO and chair for the foundation’s board of directors.  Peterson has also founded several businesses, for which he works in executive roles, and sits on the board of several nonprofit organizations. 
Michael Peterson’s father, Peter Peterson, died with an estimated net worth of $2 billion and through the Giving Pledge, committed at least half of his wealth to philanthropy.   Peter Peterson was a first generation American who had Greek parents that owned a diner. In 1971, President Richard Nixon-named him to Assistant to the President for International Economic Affairs and then a year later, he became the U.S. Secretary of Commerce. He also chaired the Federal Reserve Bank of New York from 2000 to 2004. Peterson also cofounded the Blackstone Group and chaired and served as CEO for Lehman Brothers and Lehman Brothers, Kuhn, Loeb Inc. 
In 2007, Michael Peterson co-founded Evolve IP, one of the fastest growing telecommunications companies that was listed under the Deloitte Fast 500. He also co-founded GPX Enterprises, a private equity and real estate investment firm. Additionally, Peterson has worked in corporate finance, overseeing several billion-dollar transactions. He is also the CEO of Peterson Management LLC, managing the Peterson family’s investments. 
Michael Peterson chairs of the board of directors for the Peterson Institute for International Economics. He also sits on the board of the center-left Nuclear Threat Initiative and the Partnership for New York City. Peterson is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Economic Club of New York, and the Business Executives for National Security. 
Michael Peterson is the CEO and board chair for the Peter Peterson Foundation, which last reported assets totaling over $800 million.  The foundation takes a centrist position on fiscal policy and performs research and advocates for eliminating America’s budget deficit. On behalf of the foundation, Peterson has stated that it supports policy from both Republicans and Democrats as long as it works to reduce the national debt and federal deficit. It does not advocate for eliminating social programs or eliminating taxes, but instead advocates for finding more cost-efficient ways to fund social programs without adding to the deficit.