June 7, 2022 – The Federal Reserve Bank of New York has called in New York City-based Bridge Partners to lead its search for a new general counsel. The search firm’s founders and partners Tory Clarke and Larry Griffin along with partner Ryan Whitacre are leading the assignment. Four years ago, Bridge Partners and Spencer Stuart placed John Williams as the New York Fed’s president and CEO. The New York Fed wants a proven legal executive to serve as the bank’s general counsel and head of the Legal Group, a diverse set of experts who help guide and protect the Federal Reserve’s critical monetary policy and financial services operations.
The general counsel is accountable for all aspects of the New York Fed’s legal, compliance, and ethics matters, said Bridge Partners. As a trusted advisor to the bank’s leadership, the general counsel oversees all legal work related to strategy, operations, people matters, compliance, ethics, and risk while also working on policy matters with bank executives and with key relationships external to the bank, including internationally. This individual will be expected to inspire, support, and develop a team that is agile and responsive to change, conceptualize the New York Fed’s needs and have the skills to manage and achieve desired results in a highly dynamic environment, while maintaining the highest standards of excellence.
The New York Fed’s general counsel reports to Mr. Williams. The general counsel’s direct reports are chief compliance officer, three deputy general counsels, and the chief operating officer.
Candidates for the New York Fed’s general counsel position must have a law degree from an accredited U.S. law school as well as the ability to practice law in New York, said Bridge Partners. The individual should also have broad exposure and expertise in matters related to the Federal Reserve Bank and its work (e.g., banking and financial services regulation, anti-corruption, public policy, ethics and compliance, anti-money laundering, employment matters, enterprise risk management, intellectual property and data privacy/security, and litigation management and dispute resolution).
Banking and financial services regulatory experience is most applicable for the role, but candidates with significant legal leadership experience advising clients in highly regulated industries gained in a reputable law firm, corporate legal department, and/or government agency will also be considered, said Bridge Partners. Prospects must also have progressive management experience, including direct supervision of attorneys and other professional team members.
Demonstrated experience and success collaborating across functional areas and interacting effectively with internal and external stakeholders at the most senior levels as well as down and across a sophisticated, complex organization is also required. Candidates should have a proven record of leading a team through change as well as a demonstrated track record in advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion.
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York is one of 12 regional Reserve Banks which, together with the Board of Governors in Washington, D.C., make up the Federal Reserve System. The Fed, as the system is commonly called, is an independent governmental entity created by Congress in 1913 to serve as the central bank of the U.S. The Federal Reserve is responsible for formulating and executing monetary policy, supervising and regulating depository institutions, and providing financial services for the U.S. government. The New York Fed oversees the Second Federal Reserve District, which includes New York State, the 12 northern counties of New Jersey, Fairfield County in Connecticut, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Bridge Partners is a certified minority supplier and a minority business enterprise. Based in New York, with offices in Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Chicago and Boston, the firm has completed higher education/academia senior leadership searches for roles such as head of human resources, head of finance, head of audit and deans. Its non-profit clients include non-profit and for-profit clients include the Denver Housing Authority, Women In Need, TIAA-CREF, Freddie Mac, Accion, Colgate-Palmolive, YWCA, Starbucks and the Federal Reserve System.
Ms. Clarke supports senior global search assignments for private sector, public sector and international non-profit/social venture clients, across all functions. A 20-year veteran of the executive search industry, she has recruited diverse executives, including CEO/presidents and their leadership teams, at both head office and regional locations around the globe.
Mr. Griffin partners with clients on leadership assignments within the private, federal/public and non-profit sectors. He has been in executive search for nearly 30 years and has recruited diverse leaders across multiple functions, from CEO/ executive directors/ presidents to functional heads including chief financial officer, chief marketing officer, chief information officer, chief strategy officer and their teams.
Mr. Whitacre is a strategic advisor and talent-spotter to hiring managers and search committees for leadership roles – board, C-suite and function heads – across sector and industry. As the leader of Bridge Partners’ Chicago office, he is dedicated to identifying and recruiting an array of diverse talent for each engagement.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media