SEC general counsel Dan Berkovitz to step down

Quick Take

  • Dan Berkovitz, formerly a CFTC commissioner, will step down from his SEC position.
  • Berkovitz, in his previous role, reportedly dined with disgraced former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried.

Securities and Exchanges Commission general counsel Dan Berkovitz will step down effective Jan. 31. While known as a decentralized finance hardliner, reports indicate that in his previous role at the CFTC he met and dined with disgraced FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried.

Berkovitz was lobbied by Bankman-Fried just before joining the SEC, the Washington Examiner reported. Bankman-Fried currently faces a prison sentence of as much as 115 years stemming from an eight-count indictment.

"After thirty-four years of public service, it is time for me to pursue new and different challenges and opportunities," Berkovitz said in an SEC announcement. He joined the SEC in November 2021 after leaving his role as a commissioner at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

Megan Barbero, a former Department of Justice attorney who is currently the SEC’s principal deputy general counsel, will take his place.

Berkovitz had previously criticized decentralized finance for lacking intermediaries to protect investors, calling it "a Hobbesian marketplace."

Disclaimer: Beginning in 2021, Michael McCaffrey, the former CEO and majority owner of The Block, took a series of loans from founder and former FTX and Alameda CEO Sam Bankman-Fried. McCaffrey resigned from the company in December 2022 after failing to disclose those transactions.

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