CSBS general counsel John Gorman dies after battle with cancer

Architect of the NMLS held bank supervision position for the past 15 years

John “Buz” Gorman, a key figure in financial regulation for nearly 30 years, passed away on Monday following an eight-month battle with glioblastoma, a form of cancer. Throughout his tenure as general counsel for the Conference of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS), Gorman contributed to significant legislative milestones and nurtured the next generation of regulators.

“The state regulatory system and the broader financial system will forever be in debt to Buz Gorman,” CSBS President and CEO Brandon Milhorn said in a statement. “He was a critical contributor to every major piece of financial services legislation over the past 30 years.

“Buz will be remembered for his unrivaled knowledge of financial services policy and regulation, but more importantly for his mentorship, friendship, and leadership. He will be greatly missed by his friends and colleagues at CSBS and throughout the state system.”  

Before joining CSBS in 1996, Gorman worked with former Florida Sen. Connie Mack, focusing on environmental and labor issues. His tenure at CSBS was marked by notable achievements, including the drafting and implementation of the CSBS Nationwide Cooperative Agreement. The latter facilitated collaboration between state and federal regulators concerning the supervision of state-chartered banks that operated in multiple states.

Gorman’s influence extended to Capitol Hill, where he helped craft the Financial Services Regulatory Relief Amendments Act of 2006. This landmark legislation empowered state regulators and bolstered the supervision of multistate, state-chartered banks.

His vision also drove the creation of the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System (NMLS), which resulted in new mortgage regulations through the Secure and Fair Enforcement for Mortgage Licensing (SAFE) Act. 

Furthermore, Gorman played a key role in advancing provisions to the Dodd-Frank Act, which reset the state-federal balance in banking law and reinforced the Federal Reserve System’s supervision of smaller institutions.

Gorman is survived by his wife, Kathy, and sons, J.P. and Andrew.

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