President Obama announced today that he wants Mary Jo White, a former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, who has built a reputation as a tough and effective prosecutor with a proven record of bringing criminals to justice, to head up the Security and Exchange Commission in his second term.
As U.S. Attorney, White specialized in investigating and prosecuting large scale white collar crimes and complex securities and financial institution fraud -- and won convictions against the terrorists responsible for bombing the World Trade Center and American embassies in Africa, as well as John Gotti, the head of the Gambino crime family. As President Obama said during the personnel announcement in the State Dining Room, "You don't want to mess with Mary Jo."
The SEC plays an essential role in the implementation of Wall Street reform and rooting out reckless behavior in the financial industry, and the President is confident that White’s background in enforcement and record of success make her the perfect choice to lead the agency at this important time:
There’s much more work to be done to complete the task of reforming Wall Street and making sure that American investors are better informed and better protected going forward. And we need to keep going after irresponsible behavior in the financial industry so that taxpayers don’t pay the price.
I am absolutely confident that Mary Jo has the experience and the resolve to tackle these complex issues and protect the American people in a way that is smart and in a way that is fair.
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