Introduction and Program Review
Dodd-Frank Act 10th Anniversary Conference
Tuesday, July 21, 2020, 1-5 p.m.
Christopher A. Bracey
Interim Dean, The George Washington University of Law School,
Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs, Professor of Law
with Intro by Dennis Kelleher, President and CEO, Better Markets
TRANSCRIPT of Video
I’m pleased to introduce Christopher Bracey, who is the Interim Dean at George Washington Law and also the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs of George Washington University, where he supports faculty members at all 10 schools across the university.
A Professor of Law at George Washington since 2008, Chris is an internationally recognized expert in the fields of U.S. race relations, individual rights and criminal procedure. He is a graduate of my alma mater, Harvard Law School, where he served as supervising editor of the Harvard Law Review.
His highly regarded service as Interim Dean over the last year will conclude soon, but we are delighted he is here with us today. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Chris Bracey.
Christopher A. Bracey
Thank you for that introduction, Dennis. On behalf of GW Law and our Business and Finance Law Program, we are pleased to co-sponsor today’s program with Better Markets.
I welcome you to this important and timely conference commemorating the 10th anniversary of President Obama’s signing of the historic Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010.
I would like to extend a special welcome to the many GW Law alumni joining us from around the country and the world who work in all parts of finance, financial regulation & government, and business.
I also extend a warm welcome to the GW Law students in the audience, who are also persevering through the many challenges of the current health and economic crisis, and who will no doubt be among those fighting on the front lines of the next financial crisis.
Today’s program features a great line up of speakers who will provide their unique perspectives on the Dodd-Frank Act, financial reform, the economy, and related issues, past, present, and future.
We are privileged and grateful to be able to kick off this commemorative conference with welcoming remarks by former President Barack Obama, who signed the Dodd-Frank legislation 10 years ago today. We can’t thank him enough for joining us this afternoon.
Later in the program, we will hear from the namesakes and key architects of the landmark legislation themselves: former Senator Chris Dodd and former Representative Barney Frank, whose keynote discussion will be moderated by Stephanie Ruhle, NBC News’ Senior Business correspondent and anchor of MSNBC Live with Stephanie Ruhle.
Senator Elizabeth Warren, one of the most powerful progressive voices in America today, will deliver the Closing Keynote. Most recently one of the major candidates for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, Senator Warren was intimately involved in the development of key elements of the institutional response to the 2008 financial crisis, including the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and is currently a senior member of the Senate Banking Committee.
Rounding out this program will be:
- 20th Century banking giant John Reed, who will reflect on 50 years of banking and finance;
- financial regulation veteran Sheila Bair, who played a central role during and after the financial crisis as Chair of the Federal Deposit Insurance Commission;
- Sarah Bloom Raskin, a former Governor of the Federal Reserve Board and former Deputy Secretary of the Treasury;
- and Representative Maxine Waters, sitting chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee, who will provide us with an insider’s view from the House.
With so much going on in today’s world, it may be difficult to remember the dire economic crisis facing our nation in 2008 following the worst financial crash since 1929. The largest banks in America were collapsing. The financial system was freezing up. Companies across the country were laying off workers and many were closing and going bankrupt. Millions of people lost their jobs, savings and homes. Young people graduating from college couldn’t find jobs. That was the situation President Obama faced as he took the oath of office in January of 2009.
In that context, GW Law alums and other lawyers around the country and the world suddenly found themselves playing a key role providing crucial advice and counsel to organizations of all types to help them navigate through these uncharted waters during an extended period of fundamental uncertainty:
- First, getting through the immediate shock of the depths of the Great Financial Crisis of 2008 and 2009;
- then developing business and regulatory responses to the crisis in the near-term aftermath;
- and, finally, adapting to the new, post-crisis, post-Dodd-Frank world.
We believe that this conference recalling the circumstances, policy objectives and post-passage implementation of the Dodd-Frank Act underscores the value of GW Law’s long history and deep commitment to education in business and finance law.
In addition to the specific areas of substantive business and financial law expertise taught here, we pride ourselves on emphasizing three overarching themes:
- the increased challenges of global financial stability in a complex world;
- the value of innovative and entrepreneurial approaches to solving legal and policy problems;
- and the fundamental importance of encouraging lawyers to learn and exercise ‘business leadership and judgment,’ possessing both the cross-disciplinary skillset and the ethical grounding to be able to identify and advise on the most important business and policy considerations in any particular situation.
These themes are alive and well today at GW Law:
- in the broad and deep expertise of our business and financial law faculty, and the range of our business and financial law course offerings;
- in the intelligence and promise of our JD and LLM students;
- in the accomplishments of our alums in Washington, and in financial centers like New York, and around the world;
- and in events, like this one, where we bring to you experts in the field to offer their insights and opinions.
I’d like to again thank Dennis Kelleher and Better Markets, and Jeremy Pam, the Director of GW Law’s Business and Finance Law Program, who you will hear from today as well, for their partnership on today’s program.
We have a lot of ground to cover. Thank you again for being here, and I hope you enjoy the program.