Former Fannie Mae Executive Joins Coinbase As New Chief Legal Officer

San Francisco based cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase has hired former Fannie Mae General Counsel Brain Brooks as the new Chief Legal Officer crypto startup.


San Francisco based cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase has hired former Fannie Mae General Counsel Brain Brooks as the new Chief Legal Officer crypto startup.

Coinbase hires new Chief Legal Officer

On September 19, Coinbase announced the appointment of Brian Brooks, who formerly served as an Executive at Fannie Mae as their new Chief Legal Officer.

According to the publication released by Coinbase, Brooks will take charge of the legal, compliance, and government affairs of the U.S. based cryptocurrency exchange.

Brian Brooks served as the executive vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary of the U.S. based Federal National Mortgage Association (FNMA), popularly known as Fannie Mae.

Fannie Mae purchases qualifying mortgages from lenders and pool them together in bonds before selling them to investors.

In 2017, the company reportedly provided $570 billion in mortgage financing.

Prior to his role at Fannie Mae, Brooks managed OneWest Bank, serving as the bank’s Vice Chairman. Before working at OneWest, Brooks was also served in managerial positions at O’Melveny & Myers LLP and Financial Services Practice Group

Expansion of Coinbase’s legal compliance

The appointment follows the increased focus on cryptocurrency markets by regulators and governments over the past 18 months.

The appointment of Brian Brooks is an effort from the crypto exchange to expand its legal compliance. Brian Armstrong, the CEO of Coinbase wrote in the blog post announcement:

“His arrival is part of our effort to expand our legal, compliance and government affairs capabilities as we head into this next chapter for the company and the cryptocurrency industry as a whole,”

According to the announcement, Mike Lempres, who previously served as the chief legal and risk officer at the startup, will be shifting his focus to growing the company’s government affairs program.

Lempres will now be managing the Political Action Committee (PAC) of Coinbase, he will also be involved in the company’s participation in the recently founded Blockchain Association.

In the U.S., PACs are political organizations that allow organizations with similar policy goals to pool resources and campaign contributions and donate them to a political campaign for or against candidates, policies, or ballot initiatives.

Coinbase hires LinkedIn’s head of analytics and data science.

The appointment of Brian Brooks comes just a day after the crypto exchange announced the appointment of Michael Li, a senior LinkedIn executive who spent more than seven years with the professional networking platform.

According to the announcement published on Tuesday, September 18, Michael Li would be serving as the vice president of data at Coinbase.

Li’s background makes him a specialist in the incorporation of data into financial services, e-commerce, and social networks. Li believes that the application of data in the cryptocurrency and blockchain industry will yield “endless possibilities”.

Also, in August, Coinbase hired Tim Wagner, vice-president of engineering at  Microsoft, and a former employee of Amazon Web Services to lead Coinbase’s engineering team to create an open financial system for the world.

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