Joseph Michael Finger, 79, passed away in a boating accident at Gravelly Point Monday, July 16 while fishing on the Potomac River. Born in D’Hanis, TX, Michael was a prominent economist. During his twenty-year career at the World Bank, Michael served as the Lead Economist and Chief of the Trade Policy Research Group, focusing on issues related to trade in the developing world. He previously held positions at the US Treasury Department and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development. Michael was the author of nine books and numerous influential journal articles, and was mentor and friend to a generation of the brightest minds in his field.
Two of Michael’s many passions were soccer and fishing. He coached his children, continued to spend many weekends refereeing in local leagues, and was a D.C. United season ticket holder from their inaugural season through the opening of Audi Field. He was an avid bass angler, and while he enjoyed fishing in other parts of the country with friends and family, the Potomac was his river. But nothing made him happier than sitting at the dinner table enjoying good wine and telling stories, surrounded by his family.
Michael is survived by his wife of 50 years, Mary Hill Finger, in Arlington, VA; children: Christopher (Paige) of Arlington, VA, Sarah Finger McDonald (Brian) of Corvallis, OR, and Stephen (Cara) of Atlanta, GA; and grandchildren Clemens, Gaston, Atticus, Adine, Mary Adair, and James.
Michael died doing something he loved, just too soon.
Funeral mass will take place on Wednesday, July 25 at 11:00am at St. Ann’s Catholic Church, 5300 10th St. N, Arlington.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to ALS Therapy Development Institute (als.net), Southern Poverty Law Center, or the New Horizons Bass Anglers Youth Foundation (1402 Bakers Creek Court, Herndon VA 20170).