Senior staff changes at the Federal Trade Commission have enhanced privacy’s profile within the agency. Jessica Rich is the new Deputy Director of Consumer Protection. Ms. Rich has been the Acting Associate Director responsible for the Division of Privacy and Identity Protection following nearly a decade as Assistant Director for the Division. Rich has long been seen as the FTC’s staff’s privacy thought leader. The new Privacy Division Associate Director is Maneesha Mithal. Ms. Mithal brings a strong international background to the position. The new Assistant Director is Mark Eichorn, a long time attorney advisor to the Chairman Jon Leibowitz. The Associate Director in charge of the Division of Financial Practices, Joel Winston, had led the Division of Privacy and Identity Protection, and brings a great deal of privacy experience to the financial practices position.
The FTC begins a major privacy initiative on Monday, December 7, when it will hold the first of three roundtables exploring future directions for privacy oversight. The second roundtable will be in Berkeley on January 28, 2010 with the third in Washington the second half of March.