Robert Anguizola currently is an Assistant Director in the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Marketing Practices, where he previously worked as a staff attorney. Prior to joining the Commission in October 2007, Mr. Anguizola was a litigation partner at Schwartz Cooper in Chicago. He received his undergraduate and law degrees from Northwestern University.
Yaa Apori is an attorney in the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, Division of Financial Practices where she works on variety of issues, including mortgage advertising, debt relief, and loan modification scams. Prior to joining the Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection in November 2005, Ms. Apori practiced antitrust law as an associate at WilmerHale LLP and a staff attorney with the FTC’s Bureau of Competition in the Health Care Products and Services Division.
Melissa Armstrong joined the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in November 2013. Since that time, she has worked on a variety of matters including an emergency action to enjoin an ongoing international pyramid scheme. Before coming to the Commission, Ms. Armstrong worked at Baker Botts LLP, where her practice included complex commercial and securities litigation. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Princeton University and received her J.D. from Columbia University Law School where she was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar. After law school, Ms. Armstrong clerked for the Hon. Emilio M. Garza, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
Marcus Beauregard, Colonel, U.S. Air Force (Retired) is the Chief of the Department of Defense-State Liaison Office (DSLO) within the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Military Community and Family Policy. Together with a Senior Liaison and eight Regional Liaisons, he works with state governments on a slate of key issues important to Service members and their families. Notable achievements of the DSLO have been the development and approval by 50 states of the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children, and changes in licensure policy approved by 48 states to support separating Service members and by 47 states to support military spouses. Prior to his current role, Mr. Beauregard spent 27 years in the U.S. Air Force, having assignments as a Squadron Commander, the Director of Financial Management for Air Force Services, and the Director of Morale, Welfare and Recreation Policy in the Office of the Secretary of Defense.
Catherine Blinder is the Chief Education and Outreach Officer in the State of Connecticut’s Department of Consumer Protection (DCP). At the beginning of 2014, the Department expanded its outreach efforts to include immigrants and refugees, along with other non-English-speaking communities. Ms. Blinder has developed the CAT Bulletins, one page informational pieces translated into a dozen languages, writes a bi-monthly consumer column in the only newspaper in the state that translates into Spanish, Portuguese and English, developed regular meetings with refugees who own small businesses, and organized the state’s first Cross-Cultural Communication Symposium. Prior to coming to the DCP, Ms. Blinder worked as the Communications Director at Connecticut Fair Housing Center, a trainer and facilitator for the Corporation for National and Community Service, and has spent decades advocating for progressive efforts in the state legislature.
John Breyault is the Vice President of Public Policy, Telecommunications and Fraud for the National Consumers League (“NCL”). Mr. Breyault joined NCL in September 2008. His focus is on advocating for stronger consumer protections before Congress and federal agencies on issues related to telecommunications, fraud, technology, and other consumer concerns. In addition, Mr. Breyault manages NCL’s Fraud Center and coordinates the Alliance Against Fraud coalition. He is a graduate of George Mason University, where he received a bachelor’s degree in International Relations.
Sarah Dewees is the Senior Director of Research, Policy, and Asset-Building Programs at First Nations Development Institute. First Nations Development Institute is a national Native American-led nonprofit that works to strengthen tribal economies. Ms. Dewees manages the financial and investor education portfolio of work at First Nations Development Institute, and has coordinated financial education programs in Native American communities over the past 10 years. First Nations Development Institute recently partnered with the FINRA Investor Education Foundation to provide outreach to tribal investment committees and tribal citizens on the topics of financial and investor fraud. Ms. Dewees received her Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Kentucky in 1998, an M.A. in sociology from Ohio University in 1992, and a B.A. in government from Oberlin College in 1990.
Quyen Dinh is the Executive Director of the Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC), where she brings over ten years of experience as a respected social change advocate, thoughtful nonprofit leader, strategic thinker, and effective communicator. Prior to assuming this role, Ms. Dinh joined SEARAC as Education Policy Advocate in 2011 and within two years, spearheaded national grassroots campaigns that led to the introduction of national legislation to disaggregate data for Asian American students. Prior to SEARAC, Ms. Dinh spent five years transforming early childhood education programs for Vietnamese families with the International Children Assistance Network (ICAN) in San Jose, CA by integrating participatory education, community mobilizing, and organizational development efforts. Ms. Dinh grew up in Orange County, CA, and San Jose, CA, homes to the two largest Vietnamese American communities in the United States.
Jane Duong is the Director of Programs & Advocacy for the National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development (National CAPACD). Ms. Duong leads the development and implementation of National CAPACD’s economic vitality programs - housing counseling, asset building, financial capability and small business strategies to improve the quality of life of low- and moderate-income Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander communities. Previously, she served as the Housing Program Manager for the Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA) in San Francisco, California. Ms. Duong graduated from University of California, Berkeley in Sociology and received her Master of Public Administration from New York University’s Wagner School of Public Service.
Maggie Flowers is the Senior Program Manager for Economic Security, at the National Council on Aging (NCOA). She plays a central role in the development of programmatic activities across NCOA’s economic security division. Ms. Flowers manages the Economic Security Initiative, which offers innovative programs to help older adults create a plan to build their own economic security, as well as the Center for Benefits Access’ Benefits Enrollment Centers, which use person-centered strategies in a coordinated, community-wide approach to help low-income seniors access benefits. Prior to joining the staff at NCOA, Ms. Flowers was the Interim Director of the Elder Economic Security Initiative at Wider Opportunities for Women, where she led a multi-year national campaign to build economic security for elders and their families through advocacy, research, organizing, and outreach. She received her Master of Public Service and Administration, with a focus in nonprofit management, from Texas A&M University.
Courtney Gregoire currently works as a Senior Attorney in Microsoft’s Digital Crimes Unit. Prior to returning home to Washington State, she spent nearly 10 years working in Washington D.C. in senior-level positions for both the legislative and executive branches of government. From 2009 to 2011, Ms. Gregoire served as the Director of the National Export Initiative and Deputy Chief of Staff at the U.S. Department of Commerce. Before joining the Obama administration, she served as Legislative Director and Chief Counsel for U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell. Ms. Gregoire began her career at K&L Gates, an international law firm, counseling companies on legislative and regulatory matters. In November 2013, Ms. Gregoire was elected Commissioner for the Port of Seattle and currently serves as co-president. Ms. Gregoire is a graduate of Willamette University and Harvard Law School. She proudly serves on the Seattle Colleges Board of Trustees.
Jim Greiner is a Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. He practiced law as a federal court litigator for six years (three for the U.S. Department of Justice, three for a private firm) before obtaining his Ph.D. in Statistics. Professor Greiner’s current research focuses on running randomized control trials to find out what works to address the legal and access-to-justice aspects of poverty and adjudicatory system design. His work has appeared in a variety of legal and statistical publications, including the Harvard Law Review, the Journal of the Royal Statistical Society (Series B), the Yale Law Journal, and the Quarterly Journal of Political Science. Professor Greiner has provided information to policy makers on a variety of matters at the state and federal levels.
Billy J. Hensley
Billy J. Hensley, Ph.D. is the Director of Education for the National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) where he directs the grant-making, innovative thinking, research, college, and consumer education programs for the foundation. Dr. Hensley joined NEFE in 2010 and has since managed a national teacher professional development enterprise, the foundation’s research agenda, and several financial literacy initiatives that seek to increase the financial well-being of all Americans. Prior to joining NEFE, Dr. Hensley was a Research Fellow at the University of Cincinnati, and has held positions at KnowledgeWorks Foundation, the Ohio College Access Network, Hiram College and Union College. His primary research interests are interpersonal growth and development, teacher professional development and assessment, the socio-cultural influences on behavioral choices, curriculum design, and the facilitation of social change through philanthropy. Dr. Hensley is the recipient of the Rising Star Alumni Award from Union College, where he earned a BS and an MA, received the Outstanding Doctoral Student of the Year Award in Educational Studies from the University of Cincinnati where he earned a PhD, and has published in several educational research journals.
Heather L. Hodges
Heather L. Hodges graduated from Tulane Law School and joined Neighborhood Legal Services Program (NLSP) in 2010 as Pro Bono Counsel after a decade in private practice with the law firms of Arnold & Porter LLP and Crowell & Moring LLP. Ms. Hodges’ role is to foster private attorney involvement in the delivery of civil legal aid and she serves as the liaison between NLSP and the private bar, law schools and government attorneys in the District of Columbia. She also is responsible for helping to build and maintain NLSP’s partnerships with community-based organizations as part of NLSP’s commitment to effectively identifying and addressing problems facing low-income communities, particularly those individuals and families that are hard to reach. Ms. Hodges was the recipient of a 2010-2011 Women’s Law and Public Policy Fellowship from Georgetown Law School, which is awarded to public interest lawyers who are committed to advancing women’s rights throughout their careers. Her fellowship research focused on barriers to access to justice for women in Central America.
Anthony Jackson assumed his present duties as a Management/Program Analyst in the Military OneSource and Military and Family Life Counseling Programs, Office of Military Community Outreach, Military Community and Family Policy in March 2011. As a member of the Military OneSource and Military and Family Life Counseling team, he is responsible for overseeing various financial services provided to Service members and their families. Mr. Jackson is responsible for coordinating, educating, and ensuring policy compliance relating to financial counseling, tax filing and preparation, and the deployment of Personal Financial Counselors—all services designed to increase the financial readiness of our military community. Military OneSource and the Military and Family Life Counseling Programs are components of the Department of Defense’s employee assistance program, which is available at no cost to Service members and their families. Before joining Military Community and Family Policy, Mr. Jackson served 26 years in the United States Marine Corps and retired as a Personnel Officer in October 2010.
Courtney Jones currently serves as Vice President of Multicultural Growth and Strategy at Nielsen, where she focuses on growing Nielsen’s footprint as a leader in multicultural insights. Prior to her current role, Ms. Jones was responsible for managing community outreach, events, and diversity efforts as a Vice President with Nielsen’s Public Affairs team. Ms. Jones began her Nielsen career with the Client Learning Services division, assisting clients with maximizing their media ratings software solutions. Before joining Nielsen, Ms. Jones worked with Acme Communications, Inc., selling advertising for local television affiliates, WBUI in Central Illinois and WBDT in Dayton, Ohio where she was a leader in local direct billing. She is a magna cum laude graduate of Florida A&M University where she obtained an undergraduate degree in Business Management and an MBA in Marketing.
Deborah Kennedy is Associate Vice President for Adult English Language Education at the Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL) in Washington, DC. A specialist in English for specific purposes, Ms. Kennedy directs CAL’s English for Heritage Language Speakers program which prepares native speakers of critical languages for government service; provides technical assistance to the online professional writing program conducted by the Center for Advanced Proficiency in English at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County; and directs program design, materials development, curriculum development, assessment, and teacher training projects for public and private sector agencies.
Jennifer Leach is an Acting Assistant Director in the Division of Consumer and Business Education in the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, where she specializes in targeting messages to specific audiences. Ms. Leach leads the agency’s efforts to reach older adults, heading up the creation of ftc.gov/PassItOn, an education campaign for active older people. She also leads outreach to underserved groups through consumer education, spearheading Consumer.gov, a plain and simple resource that gives the basics on consumer protection and money management. She has guided the agency’s outreach to children, leading the team that created the interactive educational games, Admongo.gov and ftc.gov/YouAreHere. Prior to joining the FTC, Ms. Leach worked on AARP’s Consumer Protection Team, and spent six years at the World Bank, three of them based in Bolivia, developing, supervising, and evaluating social development projects throughout Latin America, the Caribbean, and Eastern Europe.
Annette LoVoi was selected in 1996 as the first Executive Director of Texas Appleseed, a position she held for 10 years. Under her leadership, Texas Appleseed spearheaded the passage of indigent defense reform, hailed as the most important reform of its kind in 25 years, as well as the design of the immigrant access to financial institutions project that has evolved into one of National Appleseed’s signature projects. Ms. LoVoi was previously appointed by the Governor of Texas as the State’s first Ombudsman to execute projects leading to policy and management change in government practice. She also represented the State Comptroller in the final implementation of what was then the largest government benefits electronic transfer program in the United States. Ms. LoVoi holds a Master of Public Affairs and was the commencement speaker at her 1980 graduation from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas in Austin.
Charles R. Lowery, Jr.
Charles R. Lowery, Jr. is the Director of Fair Lending and Inclusion at the NAACP, where he oversees compliance with the NAACP’s Responsible Mortgage Lending Principles and coordinates the role of the NAACP regarding national issues in the mortgage lending and consumer financial services arenas. Prior to joining the NAACP, Mr. Lowery served as General Counsel and Legal Counsel with the D.C. Department of Banking and Financial Institutions, as Policy Counsel at the Center for Responsible Lending, and as Acting Director of Military Saves, where he directed a social marketing campaign coordinated by the Department of Defense and the Consumer Federation of America.
Julie K. Mayer
Julie Mayer is a consumer protection attorney with the Northwest Regional Office of the Federal Trade Commission, where she works on law enforcement and outreach activities. She has handled cases involving debt collection, consumer lending, deceptive advertising, and data privacy practices. Ms. Mayer also coordinates regional collaboration between the FTC and legal services organizations. In her personal capacity, Ms. Mayer serves as a board member of the Washington Housing Alliance Action Fund, which educates voters about and promotes public policies to increase access to safe, healthy, and affordable homes.
Commissioner Terrell McSweeny
Terrell McSweeny was sworn in as a Commissioner of the Federal Trade Commission on April 28, 2014, to a term that expires on September 25, 2017. Prior to joining the Commission, Commissioner McSweeny served as Chief Counsel for Competition Policy and Intergovernmental Relations for the U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division. She joined the Antitrust Division after serving as Deputy Assistant to the President and Domestic Policy Advisor to the Vice President from January 2009 until February 2012, advising President Obama and Vice President Biden on policy in a variety of areas, including health care, innovation, intellectual property, energy, education, women’s rights, criminal justice and domestic violence.
Commissioner McSweeny’s government service also includes her work as Senator Joe Biden’s Deputy Chief of Staff and Policy Director in the U.S. Senate, where she managed domestic and economic policy development and legislative initiatives, and as Counsel on the Senate Judiciary Committee, where she worked on issues such as criminal justice, innovation, women’s rights, domestic violence, judicial nominations and immigration and civil rights. She also worked as an attorney at O’Melveny & Myers LLP.
Commissioner McSweeny is a graduate of Harvard University and Georgetown University Law School.
Ted Mermin is executive director of the Public Good Law Center, a public interest law firm specializing in appellate consumer protection and public health cases. He teaches consumer protection law at the UC Berkeley law school and is senior adviser to the consumer law practice at the East Bay Community Law Center, where he helped lead the effort to draft and pass California’s new Fair Debt Buying Practice Act, and helped launch EBCLC’s first-in-the-nation immigrant consumer justice clinic. Previously, he worked as a deputy attorney general at the California Department of Justice, in private practice at the Coblentz firm, as a clerk for the Hon. Louis H. Pollak, and as an elementary school teacher.
Gary R. Mottola
Gary R. Mottola is the Research Director of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Investor Education Foundation and a social psychologist with over 20 years of research experience, more than a decade of which was spent in the financial services industry. In his role at the Foundation, he oversees and conducts research projects aimed at improving financial capability in America (particularly among vulnerable populations) and protecting investors from financial fraud and investment scams. Dr. Mottola received his B.A. from the University at Albany, his M.A. from Brooklyn College and his Ph.D. from the University of Delaware. He was a visiting scholar at Wharton in 2006 and is currently an adjunct professor of statistics in Villanova University’s Economics and Statistics Department.
Patricia Poss is an attorney in the Division of Marketing Practices in the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. Ms. Poss recently returned to DMP after serving as the Chief of BCP’s Mobile Technology Unit, where she worked to ensure that the Bureau had the necessary technical expertise, understanding of the marketplace, and tools to monitor, investigate, and prosecute deceptive and unfair practices in the mobile arena. Previously, Ms. Poss served as counsel to the Director of the Bureau, and before that, she spent several years investigating and litigating consumer protection cases that challenged Internet fraud (including phishing), spam, and telemarketing fraud. Ms. Poss is a graduate of the University of Minnesota Law School.
Chairwoman Edith Ramirez
Edith Ramirez was sworn in as a Commissioner of the Federal Trade Commission on April 5, 2010, to a term that expires on September 25, 2015. She was designated to serve as Chairwoman of the Federal Trade Commission effective March 4, 2013, by President Barack H. Obama.
Prior to joining the Commission, Chairwoman Ramirez was a partner in the Los Angeles office of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP, where she handled a broad range of complex business litigation, including successfully representing clients in intellectual property, antitrust, unfair competition, and Lanham Act matters. She also has extensive appellate litigation experience. From 1993-1996, Chairwoman Ramirez was an associate at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, LLP in Los Angeles. She clerked for the Hon. Alfred T. Goodwin in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit from 1992-1993.
Throughout her career, Chairwoman Ramirez has been active in a variety of professional and community activities. Most recently, she served as the Vice President on the Board of Commissioners for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, the nation’s largest municipal utility.
Chairwoman Ramirez graduated from Harvard Law School cum laude (1992), where she served as an editor of the Harvard Law Review, and holds an A.B. in History magna cum laude from Harvard University (1989). She is a native of Southern California.
Prior to being named Director of Financial Education at the Department of the Interior, Brian Ross was asked to serve a detail as Chief of Staff to the Special Trustee for American Indians in both Washington and Albuquerque. He began working with tribes and individual Indian beneficiaries as a Fiduciary Trust Officer at the Osage Agency in Oklahoma, as well as Trust Officer for the 29 tribes on the East Coast - from Maine down to Florida. He has been very active in promoting financial education both during his time with the Department of Interior and prior to joining public service. For nearly 10 years, Mr. Ross owned a financial planning practice in NE Oklahoma where he became a well-known financial educator in the community. Today, the scope of his community has expanded to serve all of Indian Country. He serves as an Advisory Board member for Native Community Development Financial Institutions and is an Advisory Council member to the FDIC’s Alliance for Economic Inclusion.
Ryan Sandler is a Staff Economist with the FTC’s Bureau of Economics, working in the Division of Consumer Protection. He received a doctorate in economics from the University of California, Davis. In addition to conducting economic research, Dr. Sandler assists with a variety of consumer protection and fraud matters at the FTC, and has testified in federal district court as an expert witness on behalf of the agency.
Anne Schaufele is a Staff Attorney with Ayuda’s Project END (Eradicating Notario Deceit), a new initiative launched in May 2013 to provide direct representation to immigrant victims of notario/legal services fraud in immigration, civil, and criminal matters. Ms. Schaufele is a 2013 graduate of American University, Washington College of Law, where she was a Student Attorney with the Immigrant Justice Clinic. Prior to law school, Ms. Schaufele was a Fulbright Fellow in El Salvador researching the effects of deportation on Salvadoran migrants, and she served for two years as a Staff Assistant to the ABA Commission on Immigration. She is a member of the DC Bar and American Immigration Lawyers Association.
Shawn Spruce is an independent consultant concentrating on personal finance training, curriculum design, program development, and consumer advocacy. Effective with both adults and youth, he draws from a diverse background of professional expertise, engaging interpersonal skills, and impactful life experience to financially empower individuals, families, and communities. Tribal investment training, experiential learning simulations, and lump sum preparedness workshops highlight a few of his specialties. A graduate of Haskell Indian Nations University and a member of the Laguna Pueblo, Mr. Spruce’s hobbies include reading and eating good food. He’s also great company at a dinner party who never ceases to amaze people with his extensive knowledge of hokey 80’s trivia. He resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico and Cherokee, North Carolina.
Latanya Sweeney, a professor of government and technology at Harvard University and the founder and director of Harvard’s data privacy lab, is the former Chief Technologist at the Federal Trade Commission. Prior to the FTC, she had testified before Congress and the European Commission and participated in numerous federal regulatory and advisory committees. She is a fellow of the American College of Medical Informatics. Dr. Sweeney holds a Ph.D. in computer science, master’s degrees in electrical engineering and computer science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a bachelor’s degree in computer science from Harvard. Dr. Sweeney’s research has focused on the de-identification of data, developing privacy technologies, and ways to harmonize and use technology to assess and solve governance problems. More information about her is available at latanyasweeney.org.
Andrew P. Tuck
Andrew P. Tuck is one of the founding partners of Applied Research & Consulting LLC (ARC), a New York City-based social research firm that helps private and public sector decision makers understand the complex interrelationships between behavioral and attitudinal patterns among citizens, voters, consumers, customers, audiences and employees. Utilizing sophisticated quantitative and qualitative research methodologies, and advanced data analysis techniques, ARC helps its clients develop research-based strategies for communications, management and marketing efforts. Dr. Tuck was educated at Amherst College and Princeton University and was formerly a professor of philosophy and religion before founding ARC.
Monica Vaca is an Assistant Director in the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. Ms. Vaca works in the FTC’s Division of Marketing Practices, which litigates civil law enforcement cases, engages in policy work to combat deceptive and unfair practices, and heads up the Bureau’s Legal Services Collaboration. For more than a decade, Ms. Vaca has litigated or supervised litigation against fraudulent merchants, lenders, and payment processing companies. In 2011, Monica was honored to receive the Wasserstein Fellowship from Harvard Law School’s Office of Public Interest Advising. Ms. Vaca began her career by clerking for the Honorable John F. Grady in the Northern District of Illinois. She is a graduate of Northwestern University School of Law and the University of Virginia.
R. Michael Waller
R. Michael Waller is an attorney in the FTC’s Division of Enforcement. Before joining the FTC, he worked for the Atlanta Legal Aid Society, Inc., providing legal representation to the indigent in Atlanta.
Brent A. Wilkes
Brent A. Wilkes is the National Executive Director for the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), this country’s largest and oldest Hispanic organization. Mr. Wilkes manages the operations of the LULAC National organization regarding national policy, legislative advocacy, program development, and resource development. As the LULAC National Executive Director, Mr. Wilkes works to improve the quality of life for Hispanic Americans by guiding the organization’s extensive legislative, public policy, and service activities in Hispanic communities throughout the United States and Puerto Rico. He also serves as Vice Chair of the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda, a nonpartisan coalition of major Hispanic national groups, which develops a consensus policy agenda and promotes public awareness of principal issues facing Latinos.