Sharon Y. Bowen

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Sharon Y. Bowen
Sharon Bowen.jpg
Occupation Chairman
Employer New York Stock Exchange
Location Washington, D.C.
LinkedIn Profile

Sharon Bowen is a lawyer and former regulator who serves as the chairman of the New York Stock Exchange. 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 U.S. Senate on June 3, 2014.[1]

On December 8, 2017, the board of directors of Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. (ICE) elected Bowen as a new director, filling a newly created seat on the board.[2] She is also a board member at the NYSE.

In December 2021, Bowen was appointed to become chair of the NYSE, replacing Jeff Sprecher.[3]

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.[4]

Bowen announced on June 20, 2017 that she would step down as a CFTC 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.[5]

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.[6] Her nomination was confirmed by the Senate Agriculture Committee on April 8, 2014, along with Timothy Massad and Chris Giancarlo.[7]

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.[8]

In 2022, Bowen was inducted into the Futures Industry Association's Futures Hall of Fame, which was established in 2005 to commemorate outstanding contributions to the global futures and options industry. [9]


Bowen worked for three decades as a partner and associate in law firms, specializing in business law.[10] She 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. [11]

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.[12] [13]


Bowen earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Virginia in 1978. In 1982, she earned both a Masters of Business Administration degree and a Juris Doctor from Northwestern University.[14]

FIA Hall of Fame[edit]


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