Banking Law News

Florida Financial Regulator Faces More Misconduct Allegations

May 15, 2019, 2:24 PM

Two more people have filed complaints of inappropriate work behavior against Florida’s chief financial regulator and former SEC and CFPB attorney, Ronald Rubin.

Rubin allegedly called local Tallahassee job candidates “rednecks” and told new employees he knew details about convicted “Wolf of Wall Street” stock trader Jordan Belfort’s sex life, according to two new reports released May 14 by Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis.

Rubin, commissioner of the Office of Financial Regulation, was placed on administrative leave May 10 pending an investigation of allegations of sexual harassment toward an employee. Patronis’ office has encouraged individuals with information relevant to the investigation conducted by the OFR inspector general to come forward.

One of the new complaints details a job interview with Rubin, in which he allegedly complained he was unable to find “smart people in Tallahassee,” the state capital. Rubin also told the job applicant to read his published articles, made remarks about employees being “too old” or showing signs of pregnancy in the context of wanting to restructure his organization, among other remarks.

“I have never experienced anything like this,” the complainant wrote. Their name and personal details were redacted.

The second complaint refers to a meeting between Rubin and Office of Financial Regulation staff. Rubin described his experience as an SEC attorney debriefing convicted boiler room stocktrader Jordan Belfort, known as the “Wolf of Wall Street.” A female SEC colleague was asked to leave the debriefing so that Belfort could describe his sex life, Rubin told OFR employees.

“Commissioner Rubin did not share with the group any inappropriate details of his conversation with Mr. Belfort, but he indicated that the nature of the discussion was such that the female employee did in fact need to leave the room,” the complainant wrote.

Rubin also gave his personal phone number to two female employees after the meeting, the complainant said. “My feeling was that his purpose for doing so might not have been entirely work related,” the person wrote.

Rubin worked as a senior special counsel for the Securities and Exchange Commission from 1996 to 2003, according to his LinkedIn profile.

He also worked for the House Financial Services Committee from April to December 2015, and as an enforcement attorney at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau from May 2011 to September 2012, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Rubin’s appointment as Florida’s top financial regulators was announced Feb. 26.

Rubin didn’t immediately return a request for comment.

--With assistance from Jennifer Kay in Miami.

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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