Brian Johnson is the new acting deputy director for the federal consumer financial protection agency, taking the place of the former incumbent who officially resigned Monday.
Johnson was selected for the position by Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (BCFP, formerly known as the CFPB) Acting Director John “Mick” Mulvaney. Mulvaney announced the appointment Monday; Johnson was formerly principal policy director at the agency.
The new deputy director takes the place of Leandra English, who officially resigned the position Monday (after announcing her plans to do so the previous Friday). English had challenged Mulvaney for the position of acting director in federal court, but dropped that challenge officially Monday as well.
English was tapped deputy director of the agency Nov. 24 by outgoing Director Richard Cordray; she was formerly the agency’s chief of staff. Cordray appointed her to the job under the auspices of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 (Dodd-Frank). Under that law, the deputy director becomes the director of the agency when the incumbent in that position resigns or leaves office.
But that same day, the White House announced President Donald Trump had selected Mulvaney (also the director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB)) for the position. The White House pointed to the 1998 Federal Vacancies Reform Act (FVRA) in making the selection.
English challenged the Mulvaney appointment in federal district court, which rebuffed her. In April, a federal appeals court heard her appeal of the lower court’s decision but has not yet ruled.
Regarding the selection as acting deputy director, Mulvaney said in a statement Monday that Johnson “knows the Bureau like the back of his hand.” He added that Johnson (who Mulvaney also called an “indispensable advisor”) approaches his role as a public servant with “humility and unsurpassed dedication.”
“His steady character, work ethic, and commitment to free markets and consumer choice make him exactly what our country needs at this agency,” Mulvaney added.