Making life easier for student borrowers
Robert Shireman

Robert Shireman, 51

On a crusade since: 1991

Day job: Director of California Competes, a project to improve higher education

Achievement: Making loans less burdensome for college students

Why he's a hero: In 1991, as a Senate staffer, Shireman sold Congress on federal direct loans, which eliminated middlemen and led to lower rates. Years later the Californian came back to D.C. to fight for an income-based repayment system that cut many students' monthly loan costs. And parents can also thank him for simplifying financial aid by getting the IRS to prefill applications from tax forms.

Quote: "If we can get better at judging education quality, our money will be better spent."

- Last updated September 03 2012 07:44 PM ET
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5 champions of financial education

Meet five people who were chosen as Money Heroes because they believe in financial education for everyone -- from kids to retirees -- and help make it happen.

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