SEC chairwomen Mary Schapiro to step down

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Mary Schapiro, 57, of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will step down as chairwoman on Dec.14 after she was found to be connected to an array of financial scandals, including the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme and the bankruptcy of the Lehman Brothers.

Schapiro was the first woman to serve as non-interim chair of the agency. During her four-year tenure, she passed strict enforcement and examination programs and also added restrictions to Wall Street.

“I want to express my deep gratitude to Mary Schapiro for her steadfast leadership at the Securities and Exchange Commission,” President Barack Obama said in a statement Monday.

Obama appointed Schapiro as chairwoman in January of 2009. It had been speculated since October that Schapiro had plans to step down from the SEC after the presidential election this year.

The Los Angeles Times reported that Commissioner Elisse Walter is likely to be the agency’s next chair.

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