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September 16, 2014

U.S. and International Banking Expert Joins Better Markets Staff

Washington, D.C. – July 11, 2014 – Ms. Irina Leonova, who has held a number of important positions at financial regulatory agencies in the United States and Europe, joins Better Markets as the nonprofit’s Banking Specialist.

“Irina’s deep knowledge and experience working in the banking and financial regulatory arena in both the U.S. and Europe will help Better Markets promote the public interest in the domestic and global financial markets.  She has worked on innumerable issues over the years to bring strong, sensible regulation as well as transparency, oversight and accountability to the markets.  She will be instrumental in fighting Wall Street’s too-big-to-fail firms and the threat they pose to the financial system, the treasury and the taxpayers,” said Dennis Kelleher, President and CEO of Better Markets. “We are pleased to have Irina’s depth of understanding and years of advocating for the public interest at Better Markets.”

“I am delighted to return home to DC and to join Better Markets,” said Ms. Leonova. “I very much look forward to working with my new colleagues at such a prestigious public interest organization.  I will continue to advocate and pursue reforms and polices that strengthen the US financial system and that defend and protect the interests of financial system users, consumers and the general public.”

Prior to joining Better Markets, Ms. Leonova was a member of the Secretariat at the Financial Stability Board (FSB), based in Basel, Switzerland. At the FSB, she specialized in regulatory and financial policy design and implementation relating to, among other areas, financial data infrastructures including financial benchmarks (interest rate and FX), financial and commodity derivatives markets and the provision of long-term investment finance.

Prior to assuming her position with the FSB in January 2012, Ms. Leonova held a number of positions in the U.S. federal government, including at the U.S. Department of Treasury, Office of Financial Research; U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission; and, the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Among recent policy initiatives that she worked on are the FSB report on Reforming Major Interest Rate Benchmarks and the FSB consultative paper on Foreign Exchange Benchmarks. Ms. Leonova has also worked on a wide variety of financial data projects including: OTC derivatives data aggregation and reporting requirements; a study on the feasibility of mandating algorithmic descriptions for derivatives; CFTC swap data recordkeeping and reporting requirements; as well as the FSB global legal entity identifier for financial markets initiative among others.

Her recent publications include a chapter in the Handbook of Financial Data and Risk Information, Cambridge University Press and articles in the Banque de France, Financial Stability Review and Risk magazine on data quality and information to support effective financial stability policies.

Ms. Leonova holds an MBA in finance from American University, MS in economics from Florida State University, degree in international economics from Far Eastern National University, as well as BS from University of Maryland.

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Better Markets is an independent, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that promotes the public interest in financial reform in the domestic and global capital and commodity markets. Better Markets advocates for transparency, oversight and accountability with the goal of a stronger, safer financial system that is less prone to crisis and failure thereby eliminating or minimizing the need for more taxpayer funded bailouts. To learn more, visit www.bettermarkets.com.

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