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Photo of Benjamin M. Lawsky

New York State
Department of
Financial Services

One State Street
New York, NY 10004-1511

Benjamin M. Lawsky, Superintendent of Financial Services

Benjamin M. Lawsky is New York State’s Superintendent of Financial Services.  He was unanimously confirmed for the position by the New York State Senate on May 24, 2011.

As Superintendent, Mr. Lawsky is the supervisor of all New York State-chartered banks, the majority of United States-based branches and agencies of foreign banking institutions, and all insurance companies in New York.  He also regulates all of New York State’s mortgage brokers, mortgage bankers, check cashers, money transmitters, budget planners, and similar providers of financial services.  Entities supervised by the Department number more than 3,800, with assets of more than $7 trillion.  

The Department was created in October 2011 through the merger of the former New York State Banking and Insurance Departments.  Superintendent Lawsky conducted and oversaw the merger of the two agencies.  The Department has approximately 1,400 employees, primarily located in New York City and Albany, and has an operating budget of approximately $250 million.

Additionally, Superintendent Lawsky serves as the co-chair of the Governor’s Cyber Security Advisory Board and serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the Empire State Development Corporation.  He also serves as the Receiver of the Department’s Liquidation Bureau, which oversees the rehabilitation and liquidation of insurance companies.  In this role, Superintendent Lawsky has overseen the complex rehabilitation of estates with assets under management of close to $3 billion.

Superintendent Lawsky also serves on the Joint Forum, an international body made up of banking, insurance and securities regulators from fifteen countries.  The Joint Forum addresses cross-sectoral issues among the three financial sectors and advises the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, the International Organization of Securities Commission and the International Association of Insurance Supervisors.

Prior to his current position, Superintendent Lawsky was Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Chief of Staff.  Previously, he served in a top position in the New York State Attorney General’s office, where he helped run and manage an office of more than 500 attorneys.  Prior to that, Mr. Lawsky spent more than five years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York, where he prosecuted white collar crime, organized crime, and terrorism cases.  He began his career as Chief Counsel to Senator Charles Schumer on the Senate Judiciary Committee and as a Trial Attorney in the Civil Division of the Department of Justice.

Superintendent Lawsky graduated from Columbia Law School and Columbia College.  Following law school, he clerked for former Chief Judge Dennis Jacobs of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and Chief Judge Carol Amon of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, before joining the Justice Department.