FTC Chairman will step down

Jon Leibowitz follows many top Washington officials to leave their posts

The chairman of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced yesterday that he will be stepping down. Jon Leibowitz told Thomson Reuters that in mid-February, he will leave his post and take some time off before going back to work in the private sector.

Leibowitz made a name for himself when he led a very public probe into Google. The case was expected to bring in a large settlement, however, Leibowitz decided to end the probe late last year with only a minor reprimand.

Experts expect one of four people will step into the FTC Chairman position. They include two FTC commissioners, Julie Brill and Edith Ramirez; FTC Director of Bureau Economics Howard Shelanski; and Philip Weiser, a professor at the University of Colorado-Boulder, and a former White House and Department of Justice veteran.

Leibowitz’s departure is just one of many changes taking place in some of Washington’s top jobs. Last week, President Obama appointed Mary Jo White, a litigation partner at Debevoise & Plimpton, to lead the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The SEC’s enforcement chief, Robert Khuzami, stepped down earlier this month, as did Labor Secretary Hilda Solis and U.S. Patent and Trademark Office head David Kappos. The SEC gained a new GC this month when it brought on Bingham McCutchen partner Geoffrey Aronow to lead the legal function.

Read more InsideCounsel stories about career changes:

11 noteworthy in-house career moves

SEC enforcement chief steps down

Labor Secretary Hilda Solis will step down

SEC names Geoffrey Aronow general counsel

Former NLRB member joins Ogletree Deakins

First Hispanic Court of Appeals judge will join Greenberg Traurig

PTO director David Kappos will step down in January

FTC loses general counsel, gains chief privacy officer

DOJ antitrust head to step down

 

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Cathleen Flahardy

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