Gary Gensler is expected to be named chair of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, according to a report by Reuters, citing two unnamed sources familiar with the matter. If appointed, the Obama-era administrator would bring experience in blockchain technology, digital currencies and fintech to the role.
Gensler was chair of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission from 2009 to 2014 and has already been working on President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team. He is a fiduciary advocate, having led the Maryland Financial Consumer Protection Commission from 2017 to 2019. In that role, Gensler oversaw efforts to "regulate cryptocurrencies, initial coin offerings, cryptocurrency exchanges, blockchain technology and data breaches," as well as address "fiduciary duty standards of care," according to Maryland state archives.
The Democratic sweep of Georgia may have helped Gensler’s cause, as at least one report questioned his confirmability in a GOP-controlled Senate. As chair of the CFTC during the Obama administration, Gensler “became famous” for adjusting regulation around derivatives and “led the crusade to uncover and prosecute the massive Libor rate-rigging scandal,” according to the New York Post.
Gensler is currently a member of the New York Fed Fintech Advisory Group and a professor at MIT Sloan School of Management, where he also co-directs [email protected], a program bringing companies and faculty together to improve fintech. He has worked on political campaigns for Hillary Clinton (2016, 2008) and Barack Obama (2008).
From 1979 to 1997 he worked in M&A at Goldman Sachs, as well as leading fixed income and currency trading in Asia. He has an undergraduate degree in economics and an MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.