The Senate last week confirmed Janet L. Yellen as chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers. Her departure leaves the Federal Reserve Board short two governors. (Lawrence B. Lindsey left Feb. 6 to join American Enterprise Institute.)
Reacting to the losses, the Fed has shuffled committee assignments. Fed Governor Laurence H. Meyer will lead the consumer and community affairs committee. He will be joined by Fed Vice Chairwoman Alice Rivlin, who also will lead the economic affairs committee. Governors Susan M. Phillips and Edward W. Kelley Jr. will retain their respective chairmanships of the supervision and reserve bank affairs committees.
The Small Business Administration has a new boss. The Senate on Thursday confirmed Aida Alvarez as administrator of the agency. She takes over from Phil Lader. Ms. Alvarez previously ran the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight.
Cynthia A. Glassman has joined Ernst & Young's newly created risk management and regulatory practice after spending eight years at Furash & Co. "This is a terrific opportunity," Ms. Glassman said. "Risk management has become a critical issue for financial firms. This gives me an opportunity to join Ernst & Young's group when it is forming."
Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan last week fretted that his golf game could suffer after challenging new bank rules issued by Comptroller of the Currency Eugene A. Ludwig.
In Feb. 13 testimony before the House Banking Committee's financial institutions subcommittee, Mr. Greenspan criticized rules allowing banks to enter new business directly through subsidiaries. The Fed chairman argued the rules give banks an unfair advantage over nonbank competitors and put deposit insurance funds at risk.
When Rep. Marge Roukema pointed out that the comptroller has rejected the criticism, Mr. Greenspan wouldn't renew his attack.
"We are golf partners," Mr. Greenspan said. "I'm afraid he won't give me any more five-foot puts."
Deval L. Patrick, the former assistant attorney general for civil rights, has joined the Boston office of the Day, Berry & Howard law firm. Mr. Patrick will focus on lending bias and employment discrimination, two issues that dominated his tenure in the Clinton administration. "We are obviously very pleased that we could snatch him from our competitors," said Stanley A. Twardy, a Day Berry partner.
At a Feb. 13 press conference, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Alfonse M. D'Amato, R-N.Y., took glee in the extensive backing for his proposal requiring lenders to notify homeowners when they no longer need mortgage insurance.
The long list of supporters included the Consumer Bankers Association, America's Community Bankers, the major credit union groups, and Consumer's Union. "My God, if we could get them together for Glass-Steagall," Sen. D'Amato quipped, eliciting some chuckles from the audience.