Release Number 8340-20

Market Participants Division Director Joshua B. Sterling to Depart CFTC in January

December 21, 2020

Washington, D.C. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission today announced that Market Participants Division (MPD) Director Joshua B. Sterling will depart the agency by the end of January 2021. Mr. Sterling has led MPD since joining the agency from private practice in August 2019.

“Josh has been an integral member of my team since the first weeks of my term,” said CFTC Chairman and Chief Executive Heath P. Tarbert. “He leaves behind a legacy of significant accomplishments, all of which centered around the goal of establishing and implementing smart, effective, and practical oversight of the 3,300 derivatives intermediaries registered with the CFTC. I am grateful for Josh’s service and his contributions to our historic rulemaking agenda.”

“Time and again, the Market Participants Division has delivered on its commitments under Chairman Tarbert’s strategic action plan,” said Mr. Sterling. “In doing so, the Division has helped the Commission fulfill its vision of being the global standard for sound derivatives regulation, and every member of our talented staff will forever have my gratitude and respect for the results we achieved together. It has been the greatest honor of my professional career to serve the Commission and the American public, and I deeply appreciate Chairman Tarbert for allowing me the opportunity to do so. I also wish to thank the Commissioners, their staffs, and the staff of the entire agency for their support and cooperation over the past two years.”

Under Mr. Sterling’s leadership, MPD identified and successfully advanced five main priorities: 1) completing significant rulemaking items, including all outstanding items within its remit under the Dodd-Frank Act; 2) reinvigorating registrant oversight with the five building blocks program and other innovative operational enhancements; 3) helping lead the agency’s response to market developments resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic; 4) fostering responsible innovation in the digital assets space; and 5) expanding the Division’s mandate to include overseeing the agency’s customer education initiatives. Notably, MPD successfully completed 35 rule actions that were approved for public comment or finalization by the Commission. This included final rules governing swap dealer capital requirements and the cross-border regulation of swap transactions, which concluded MPD’s implementation of the Dodd-Frank Act. MPD also finalized significant revisions to the commodity pool operator reporting form (Form CPO-PQR) and most recently completed final rule actions that streamline the Commission’s regime for the exchange of uncleared swaps margin. 

A born-and-bred Ohioan, Mr. Sterling was educated at Vanderbilt University and the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He has spent the entirety of his professional career practicing law in the financial services sector, most recently as a partner at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP in Washington, D.C.

Upon Mr. Sterling’s departure, MPD Deputy Director Amanda Olear will serve as the Division’s Acting Director. “Amanda represents the very best of our career civil service—a safe pair of hands whose dedication and expertise is unmatched,” said Chairman Tarbert.