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Office to Promote Diversity in the Financial Services Industry
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) today announced the selection of Stuart Ishimaru to head the newly established Office of Minority and Women Inclusion (OMWI), which will work to promote diversity at the CFPB and at the financial institutions it regulates.
“Americans from all walks of life use consumer financial products and services. We should strive to reflect that diversity because, in the end, it will only strengthen the work we do,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “Mr. Ishimaru’s extensive experience in promoting diversity makes him the perfect person for the job.”
Mr. Ishimaru has spent much of his professional life working to foster greater diversity in workplaces. His experience includes leading the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and serving in senior positions in the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice, and the Commission on Civil Rights. His work was often geared toward creating policies to foster diversity in the workplace and creating opportunities for women and minorities in contracting jobs.
The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act requires the Bureau to establish the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion. In January, the CFPB established the office in January 2012. Among other requirements, OMWI is charged, by statute, with developing standards for:
- Equal employment opportunity and the racial, ethnic and gender diversity of the workforce and senior management of the agency;
- Increased participation of minority-owned and women-owned businesses in the CFPB’s programs and contracts; and
- Assessing the diversity policies and practices of the CFPB’s regulated entities.
“I am thrilled at this opportunity to be a part of a new era of consumer financial protection,” said Mr. Ishimaru, who began serving as the Assistant Director of the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion today. “Including women and minorities in the workplace is good for both businesses and the customers they serve.”
Mr. Ishimaru comes to the CFPB from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, where he was Commissioner. President George W. Bush nominated Mr. Ishimaru, on the recommendation of Sen. Tom Daschle, to be one of the five members of the Commission in 2003. President Barack Obama named Mr. Ishimaru Acting Chairman of the Commission in January 2009 – a role he held until April 2010. Created by the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Commission is responsible for enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability and genetic information. As Acting Chairman of the Equal Opportunity Commission, Mr. Ishimaru led an agency of 2,300 employees and a budget of $367 million.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is a 21st century agency that helps consumer finance markets work by making rules more effective, by consistently and fairly enforcing those rules, and by empowering consumers to take more control over their economic lives. For more information, visit consumerfinance.gov.