President Obama nominated Richard Cordray as Director of the CFPB on July 18, 2011. Mr. Cordray, a former Ohio Attorney General, had been heading the CFPB’s Enforcement Division. Congressional hearings on Mr. Cordray’s nomination are scheduled for September 6, 2011.

The Treasury announced that Raj Date, who had been serving as the CFPB’s Associate Director of Research, Markets, and Regulations, will, as of August 1, serve as the Special Advisor to the Secretary of the Treasury on the CFPB, replacing Elizabeth Warren, who returned to her position at Harvard Law School.  

Leonard Kennedy, the CFPB’s General Counsel, in a recent interview, tried to reassure the financial services industry that the Bureau would be fair in its enforcement activities, saying, “[W]e are reasoned decision makers and reasonable people.” The General Counsel’s Office, which currently employs about 35 lawyers, advises the Bureau on a host of internal policies as well as regulatory and enforcement activities. Mr. Kennedy also indicated that the Bureau would be taking an inclusive posture and encouraging input from all sources and noted that the Bureau does not “have all the received wisdom.”  

What you need to know now: There are now approximately 500 employees at the CFPB, and the Assistant Director positions are almost filled. Many of the employees at the federal agencies whose authority was transferred to the CFPB were also transferred to the Bureau, so there is a continuity of expertise and historical knowledge concerning the various statutes and regulations now under the Bureau’s purview.