Release Number 7541-17

March 30, 2017

CFTC Acting Chairman Giancarlo Appoints James McDonald as Enforcement Director

Washington, DC — U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Acting Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo today announced the appointment of James McDonald to be the Director of the agency’s Enforcement Division. Mr. McDonald, who was most recently a prosecutor in the Southern District of New York, brings to the agency a successful track record of pursuing white collar and other crimes. Mr. McDonald will assume his duties at the agency on April 10.

“Jamie McDonald’s appointment as the Director of the Enforcement Division is a signal to those who may seek to cheat or manipulate U.S. markets that there will be no pause, no let up and no relaxation in the CFTC’s mission to enforce the law and punish wrongdoing,” said Acting Chairman Giancarlo. “Mr. McDonald is an accomplished Federal prosecutor and skilled agent of American law enforcement, and I am pleased he will take over this important job.” Giancarlo added, “I am grateful for Vince McGonagle’s service as Acting Director of Enforcement and delighted that he will continue his fine work at the Commission under Mr. McDonald.”

Mr. McDonald joins the CFTC from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York, where he served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney and most recently in the Public Corruption Unit. While at the U.S. Attorney's Office, Mr. McDonald prosecuted a wide variety of cases, including serving as a member of the trial team that successfully prosecuted former Speaker of the New York State Assembly Sheldon Silver for public corruption offenses. Earlier in his career, Mr. McDonald served as a law clerk to the Honorable John G. Roberts, Jr., Chief Justice of the United States, and, before that, as a law clerk to United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, the Honorable Jeffrey S. Sutton, Jr. A graduate of Harvard College and University of Virginia School of Law, Mr. McDonald previously served in the Office of White House Counsel, as a Deputy Associate Counsel, and he worked at the law firm of Williams & Connolly LLP.

"I’m excited to join the CFTC at this time in its history, when vigorous enforcement is more important than ever," Mr. McDonald said. "I am thankful to Acting Chairman Giancarlo for giving me this opportunity, and to Vince McGonagle and Aitan Goelman whose work we are committed to continuing, and building on, in the coming years. I look forward to working alongside the tremendous staff in the Division to help the CFTC protect the integrity of the derivatives, futures, and swaps markets during this important time.”

Originally from Tulsa, Oklahoma, Mr. McDonald has also served as a visiting professor at the University of Tulsa College of Law, where he taught Constitutional Law, Federal Courts, Foreign Relations Law, and Supreme Court Decision making.

Last Updated: March 30, 2017