CFPB Changes Senior Leadership But Director Cordray Stays Put

Richard Cordray testifying 1The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has announced several high level leadership changes within the Bureau. The positions announced today are: the Chief of Staff; the Chief Information Officer; the Chief Financial Officer; the Assistant Director of Consumer Lending, Reporting, and Collections Markets; and the Assistant Director for the Office for Servicemember Affairs.

CFPB Director Richard Cordray said he was “very excited” with the announcement;

“The mix of experience and talent this group brings will provide great value to the Bureau as we continue to work on behalf of consumers everywhere.”

Several of the appointments were from individuals already employed by the Bureau with others coming from various governmental entities.

majesty-of-law-dc-legislation-house-capitol-5The CFPB has had a challenging year. Created by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the CFPB structure was ruled unconstitutional by a Federal judge in October.  The Bureau was criticized for its lack of accountability and the absence of Presidential supervision and direction. The judge said the structure posed a “significant threat to individual liberty and to the constitutional system of separation of powers and checks and balances.”

Just last month, the CFPB received a blistering review from a former staffer. The article described the young Bureau as highly politicized and doomed by a structure that made it an inherently political agency.

The Chair of the House Financial Services Committee has indicated his opinion that the CFPB has an important mission. But the Chair also called the Bureau’s structure “bizarre and defective”.

It is unclear as to how the incoming Trump administration will address the alleged shortcomings of the CFPB.

The following individuals were announced today as joining the CFBP leadership team: 

Leandra English is returning to the CFPB to serve as the Chief of Staff.  Ms. English has previously served in a number of senior leadership roles at the Bureau, including deputy chief operating officer, acting chief of staff, deputy chief of staff, and deputy associate director of external affairs. Most recently, Ms. English served as the principal deputy chief of staff at the Office of Personnel Management.  Ms. English also served as chief of staff and senior advisor to the deputy director of management at the Office of Management and Budget. Ms. English received her B.A. from New York University and her M.S. from the London School of Economics.

Jerry Horton will serve as the CFPB’s Chief Information Officer. Before joining the Bureau, Mr. Horton worked at the Department of State where he started and led the Office of the Chief Architect for State’s global information presence. Prior to that, Mr. Horton was the chief information officer at the U.S. Agency for International Development and before that held the same role at the U.S. Mint in the Department of the Treasury. Before working in the government, Mr. Horton spent over 20 years in the private sector leading both business and technical functions for a wide variety of startups, two supercomputer manufacturers, and several large corporations. Mr. Horton received his B.S. from the University of Colorado.

Paul Kantwill will serve as the CFPB’s Assistant Director for Servicemember Affairs. Prior to joining the Bureau, Mr. Kantwill served as the director in the Office of Legal Policy, Office of the Under Secretary of Defense, Personnel & Readiness at the Pentagon. In this capacity, Mr. Kantwill was the Department of Defense’s legal policy expert on the financial industry and the effects financial products and services had on military members and their families. Mr. Kantwill had a 25 year military career as an active duty officer in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps, and has served in Afghanistan, and the Persian Gulf. Mr. Kantwill received his B.A. from Loyola University, Chicago and his J.D. from Loyola University, Chicago School of Law.

John McNamara will serve as the CFPB’s Assistant Director of Consumer Lending, Reporting, and Collections Markets.  Mr. McNamara previously served in the same capacity in an acting role, and before that was the debt collection program manager at the Bureau. Prior to joining the Bureau, Mr. McNamara was the chief marketing officer for LiveVox, a provider of cloud contact center solutions, and was the president, chief executive officer, and co-founder of Fidelis Recovery Solutions, Inc. Mr. McNamara has over 30 years of experience working in the debt collection market. Mr. McNamara received his B.A. and M.B.A. from Kennesaw State University.

Elizabeth (Eli) Reilly will serve as the CFPB’s Chief Financial Officer. Ms. Reilly previously served as the deputy chief financial officer at the Bureau, joining as one of the agency’s first employees in 2010. Prior to joining the CFPB, Ms. Reilly was a program examiner and acting branch chief at the Office of Management and Budget. Ms. Reilly was also a Peace Corps volunteer in Guinea, West Africa. Ms. Reilly received her B.A. from Wesleyan University and her M.A.L.D. from Tufts University.

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