Rep. Henry B. Gonzalez, D-Tex., recommended the banking commissioner from his home state, Catherine A. Ghiglieri, for chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. in a letter to President Clinton on Wednesday.

"Under Ms. Ghiglieri's stewardship, the Texas Banking Department has been a model for other states," wrote the House Banking Committee's ranking minority member.

Ms. Ghiglieri has been Texas banking commissioner since 1992, and she spent 18 years at the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, including a stint as director of the agency's Atlanta field office. Mr. Gonzalez' letter credited her with assisting the state legislature's modernization of Texas banking laws.

"It would be an honor to be the chairman of the FDIC," Ms. Ghiglieri said. "They need a strong permanent chairman quickly."

The FDIC is being led by acting Chairman Andrew C. Hove Jr., following the June 1 resignation of Ricki Helfer.

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