RELEASE Number
7976-19

July 15, 2019

Tarbert Begins Term as 14th CFTC Chairman

Chairman Tarbert: “Now Is the Time to Act.”

— Dr. Heath P. Tarbert officially began his term today as the 14th Chairman of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), succeeding J. Christopher Giancarlo.

CFTC Chairman Heath P. Tarbert takes the oath of office from Judge Douglas H. Ginsburg alongside his family.

“America’s futures, swaps, and options markets are the global standard. Their integrity is essential to the economic security of every American, particularly our farmers and ranchers.  I look forward to working with each Commissioner and the talented staff at the CFTC to ensure our derivatives markets remain vibrant and wrongdoers are held accountable,” said Chairman Tarbert. “At its core, the CFTC is a guardian of the American free-enterprise system. Opportunities and threats await us, and we will be ready. Whether it be unfinished business or the unwritten future, now is the time to act, and I intend to hit the ground running.”

Chairman Tarbert offered words of praise for his predecessor, saying, “Chris deserves great credit for his hard work and service leading the CFTC. Thanks to his efforts, this Commission is positioned better to tackle the challenges we face today and into the future.”

Chairman Tarbert was nominated by President Trump for a term expiring on April 13, 2024.  He was approved unanimously by the Senate Agriculture Committee before being confirmed as Chairman by the U.S. Senate with broad, bipartisan support in a vote of 84-9. In addition to setting the rulemaking agenda for the Commission, Chairman Tarbert also serves as the agency’s chief executive, leading its day-to-day work to ensure the integrity of the futures, swaps, and options markets, which see hundreds of trillions of dollars in activity each year.

Chairman Tarbert has extensive experience in financial services law and has served in leadership roles in the public and private sector. Most recently, he served as Assistant Secretary for International Markets and subsequently as acting Under Secretary for International Affairs at the U.S. Department of the Treasury. In these roles, Chairman Tarbert served as the G-7/G20 Deputy Finance Minister, a member of the Financial Stability Board, and the co-chair of both the US-EU Financial Regulatory Forum and the US-UK Financial Regulatory Working Group. Prior to his service at the Treasury Department, Chairman Tarbert was head of the bank regulatory practice of Allen & Overy LLP, a leading global law firm. Earlier in his career, he served as Special Counsel to the U.S. Senate Banking Committee and as Associate Counsel to the President of the United States for financial markets.  

Apart from his public and private sector roles, Chairman Tarbert has served as Legal Adviser to the Systemic Risk Council, Senior Fellow at the Harvard Law School Program on International Financial Systems, Deputy Director of the Committee on Capital Markets Regulation, and as a member of the Board of Advisors for the Review of Securities and Commodities Regulation. In addition, Chairman Tarbert is a licensed CPA and CFA charterholder, and he is an elected member of the American Law Institute. 

Chairman Tarbert was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland.  He holds a bachelor’s degree from Mount St. Mary’s University, law and doctor of juridical science degrees from the University of Pennsylvania, and a doctorate in comparative law from Oxford University, where he was a Thouron Scholar. Chairman Tarbert lives with his wife and two young sons in northwest Washington, D.C., where they attend St. Ann Catholic Church.