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Bank Regulator Taps Coinbase Executive for No. 2 Spot (1)

March 16, 2020, 3:40 PMUpdated: March 16, 2020, 4:02 PM

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has appointed Brian Brooks, chief legal officer at cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, as first deputy comptroller, the agency’s second highest position.

Brooks will also serve as the OCC’s chief operating officer effective April 1, the agency said Monday in a statement. The role oversees bank supervision and supervisory policy, economics, compliance, and the agency’s innovation unit.

The first deputy comptroller position, designated by the Treasury secretary, can take on the comptroller’s role in the event the comptroller is unavailable or unable to perform the duties of the role.

Brooks will be taking on the chief operating officer role from Morris Morgan, who is retiring at the end of April. Morgan was appointed to the position in January 2019. Morgan is also a senior deputy comptroller and chief national bank examiner.

Brooks worked at OneWest Bank, N.A., from 2011 to 2014, the same bank where Treasury Department Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting were chief executive officers.

He also previously worked as executive vice president and general counsel of Fannie Mae.

Brooks will step down from the board of directors of Fannie Mae and Avant, a marketplace lender, prior to joining the OCC, the agency’s statement said.

(Adds information about Brooks' position, outgoing official he's replacing, and board resignations)

To contact the reporter on this story: Lydia Beyoud in Washington at lbeyoud@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Michael Ferullo at mferullo@bloomberglaw.com; Seth Stern at sstern@bloomberglaw.com

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