CFTC Taps Coinbase’s VP to Lead Division Responsible for Bitcoin Futures Oversight

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by Darya Rudz · 3 min read
CFTC Taps Coinbase’s VP to Lead Division Responsible for Bitcoin Futures Oversight
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At CFTC, Coinbase’s Dorothy D. DeWitt will be responsible for the supervision of derivatives platforms, including bitcoin futures, swap data repositories, as well as for the evaluation of the new platform-traded products.

The United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has welcomed a new member to its team. They have appointed Dorothy D. DeWitt, General Counsel of Coinbase‘s Business Lines and Markets and the vice president, as the director of the Division of Market Oversight (DMO).

According to the CFTC’s announcement, at CFTC, Dorothy D. DeWitt will be responsible for supervision of derivatives platforms and swap data repositories, as well as evaluating new platform-traded products. Ms. DeWitt will replace former DMO director Amir Zaidi, who spent more than nine years at CFTC and oversaw the first Bitcoin futures contracts as they entered the crypto space in late 2017.

The U.S. CFTC Chairman Heath P. Tarbert commented:

“I am excited Dorothy will soon be joining our team. She brings to the CFTC more than 20 years of private sector experience in the financial services and legal fields.  Her strong investment, risk, legal, and compliance background and familiarity with distributed ledger technology, including crypto assets, will be invaluable as the agency looks to develop a holistic approach to regulating 21st-century commodities.”

Chairman Tarbert added:

“I also want to thank Dorothy’s predecessor, Amir Zaidi, for his more than nine years of service at the CFTC. We wish him all the best as he begins an exciting new chapter.  I also deeply appreciate Vince McGonagle’s current leadership of the Division in an acting capacity. A CFTC veteran for two decades, Vince is among the very best career professionals in the regulatory community.”

Dorothy D. DeWitt graduated from Harvard Law School, cum laude, and the University of Texas at Austin. Moreover, Ms. DeWitt is a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist (CAMS) and admitted to practice law in New York. She spent about ten years in an investment capacity and held positions as a partner and portfolio manager at asset management firm Cadogan Management.

Ms. DeWitt also served in senior legal and compliance roles for Citadel and was president of her local youth 4-H club and worked during college in the poultry processing industry in Gainesville, Georgia, the poultry capital of the world. Furthermore, she served as a research analyst at a merger arbitrage and event-driven hedge fund at ING Furman Selz.

Since last November, Dorothy D. DeWitt has been a Vice President and General Counsel for Business Lines and Markets at Coinbase.

This is not the first time when Coinbase’s members join CFTC. In July, the agency hired Andrew L. Ridenour, who served as counsel for institutional products at Coinbase, as senior counsel to the chairman.

Chairman Tarbert joined CFTC also in July and succeeded Christopher Giancarlo who joined the advisory board to the Chamber of Digital Commerce, a trade association focused on blockchain and cryptocurrency policy in Washington D.C. Previously, Tarbert was a Treasury Department official.

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