Sharon Y. Bowen
|Sharon Y. Bowen|
Sharon Bowen served as a commissioner of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) from 2014 through 2017, where she was a sponsor of the Market Risk Advisory Committee. She was sworn in as a commissioner on June 9, 2014, after being confirmed by the US Senate on June 3, 2014.
She previously served as vice chair of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) where she was acting chair from 2012 through 2014.
Before that, she was a partner and member of the corporate department in the New York law office of Latham & Watkins LLP.
Bowen announced on June 20, 2017 that she would step down as a commissioner in the next few months because of her frustration with the slow pace of work at the commission, which lacked a full quorum since that February.
Bowen was nominated to the CFTC by the Obama administration in December 2013, to replace Bart Chilton, who left the commission at the end of 2013. Her nomination was confirmed by the Senate Agriculture Committee on April 8, 2014, along with Timothy Massad and Chris Giancarlo.
Some senators opposed Bowen's nomination because she was acting head of the Securities Investor Protection Corp. and the senators wanted SIPC to compensate victims of the Ponzi scheme perpetrated by Allen Stanford, but SIPC had denied the request, saying doing so would conflict with the law that created the agency.
Bowen began her career at the law firm of Davis, Polk & Wardwell, but moved to Latham & Watkins in 1988. Her areas of expertise include mergers and acquisitions, private equity, securities offerings and corporate governance matters.
Bowen is also a member of several boards of directors, including:
- Emeritus Board of Directors of New York Lawyers for the Public Interest, Inc. (formerly Executive Committee and Chair),
- New York City Economic Development Corporation (Executive Committee),
- Northwestern Law School (formerly Executive Committee and Chair),
- PENCIL (Executive Committee) and
- UrbanAmerica, Inc.
Before being appointed SIPC chairman in February 2012, Bowen served as vice chair. 
A working paper by Chris Brummer, the Agnes N. Williams Research Professor at Georgetown University, titled "What do the data reveal about (the absence of Black) financial regulators?" pointed out that through July 2020, Bowen was one of just 10 Black regulators appointed to oversee financial regulatory agencies, including the Federal Reserve and Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., as well as the CFTC, since the founding of the agencies in the 19th and 20th centuries. 
Bowen earned a BA from the University of Virginia in 1978. In 1982, she earned both an MBA and a JD from Northwestern University.
- Sharon Bowen Sworn In as a Commissioner of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission. CFTC.
- INTERCONTINENTAL EXCHANGE ANNOUNCES ELECTION OF SHARON BOWEN TO ICE BOARD OF DIRECTORS. ICE.
- SIPC Announces New Acting Chair of its Board of Directors. SIPC.
- CFTC Democratic Commissioner Sharon Bowen to Step Down. The Wall Street Journal.
- Sharon Bowen to Be Obama Nominee to Follow Chilton at New CFTC. Bloomberg.
- Senate Panel Approves Three Nominees To CFTC. WSJ.com.
- Senate confirms Sharon Bowen as CFTC commissioner. MarketWatch.
- SIPC Modernization Task Force Issues Report. MarketWatch.
- What do the data reveal about (the absence of Black) financial regulators?. Brookings Institution.
- Black Regulators Rarely Appointed to Oversee Wall Street. Wall Street Journal.
- Sharon Bowen. Latham & Watkins LLP.