The CFTC Fintech Chief Who Oversaw Early Blockchain Trials Is Leaving

The director of the CFTC's experimental fintech initiative will step down in mid-August to pursue work in the private sector.

AccessTimeIconAug 2, 2019 at 7:35 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 11:16 a.m. UTC

The director of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) experimental fintech initiative will step down.

According to a statement released Friday, LabCFTC’s director and chief innovation officer, Daniel Gorfine, will leave his post to pursue a job in the private sector. In his two years with the agency, Gorfine spearheaded the LabCFTC project, released educational materials on virtual currencies and launched an accelerator program to trial internal blockchain applications.

The educational primers published by LabCFTC discussed the history, characteristics, case studies and potential use-cases of blockchain and smart-contract technology, rather than set official policy. For instance, in its second primer on smart contracts, the agency said if properly deployed the protocols could reduce costs while boosting accountability and transparency.

Launched in May 2017, LabCFTC aims to help regulatory policy keep pace with a rapidly changing industry.

At a July 2018 hearing before Congress, Gorfine urged lawmakers to "not steer or impede the development of this area of innovation."

Gorfine also forged collaborative arrangements and shared policy between the CFTC, UK Financial Conduct Authority, Australian Securities and Investments Commission and the Monetary Authority of Singapore, according to Friday's CFTC statement.

CFTC Chairman Heath P. Tarbert said in the statement:

“With Dan’s vision and the support of the Commission, LabCFTC has established itself as a model for regulatory engagement with emerging technologies.”

Daniel Gorfine image via CoinDesk archives


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