Who is James B Lockhart III?

James B. Lockhart III has had a long and distinguished career, serving in multiple governmental positions and throughout the private sector. He is currently a Senior Fellow of the Bipartisan Policy Center and Chairman of the Bruce Museum, an art and science museum in Greenwich, Connecticut. He served as Vice Chairman of WL Ross & Co. from 2009 to 2018 and on its Management and Investment Committees for its private equity and mortgage funds. He led WLR’s largest and most successful investment segment, financial services.

Prior to joining WL Ross, he was the Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, regulator of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Home Loan Banks, and its predecessor agency, the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight starting in 2006.

He served as Chair of FHFA’s board and as a member of the TARP Oversight board with the Federal Reserve Chair, Secretaries of Treasury and HUD, and the SEC Chair. From 2002 to 2006 he was the Principal Deputy Commissioner and COO of the Social Security Administration and a member of President Bush’s Management Council. From 1989 to 2003, he was Executive Director of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.

He served as a director of VG (Virgin Group) Acquisition Corp. from October 2020 until June 2021 when it merged with 23 and Me.

He also served on the boards of Virgin Money (UK) from 2010 to 2015, Cascades Bancorp from 2011 to 2017, and Sun Bancorp from 2017 to 2018 as well as five private mortgage companies during that period.

Along with former Senator Conrad (D-ND) he co-chaired the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Commission on Retirement Security and Personal Savings from 2014 to 2016. In 2018 and again in 2019, he was nominated to be a Trustee of Social Security and Medicare.

Mr. Lockhart cofounded and served as a Managing Director of NetRisk, a risk management software and consulting firm serving major financial institutions. He was Senior Vice President, Finance for National Reinsurance, a Managing Director at Smith Barney, Vice President and Treasurer at Alexander & Alexander Services and Assistant Treasurer at Gulf Oil, in Europe and the U.K. He is a Fellow of the Association of Corporate Treasurers (U.K.).

Mr. Lockhart graduated from Yale University in 1968 with a BA and from Harvard Business School in 1974 with an MBA.

In his first government position, he served as a Lieutenant (j.g.) In the U.S. Navy aboard a nuclear ballistic missile submarine.

Like the mortgage world, I truly know what it is like being “underwater” for a long time. 

It's time to surface.

George W. Bush

“[T]he new regulatory agency, led by my friend and businessman Jim Lockhart… concluded the GSE’s had nowhere enough capital…the only way to prevent a disaster was to take Fannie and Freddie into government conservatorship. It was up to Hank [Paulson] and Jim…"

George W. Bush
Author of Decision Points

Henry M. Paulson, Jr.

“[W]ith my colleagues in government, Ben Bernanke, Tim Geithner, Sheila Bair, Chris Cox,John Dugan, Jim Lockhart— at times we differed on philosophy and strategy, but I never doubted their dedication to this country or their commitment to taking the bold actions necessary to save the system."

Henry M. Paulson, Jr.
Former US Secretary of the Treasury, Author of On the Brink

Edward DeMarco

“Through his tours of federal service, Jim Lockhart brings exceptional credentials and perspective to understanding the risks when government misprices insurance and to proposing changes that reduce taxpayer risk while improving economic outcomes.”

Edward DeMarco
President of the Housing Policy Council

G. William Hoagland

“Jim Lockhart has been there (underwater) and survived. Few persons today can speak with authority and knowledge of managing the shoals of critical government agencies and their continued need of repair. Even out of government, he continues to address reforms, most recently as co-chair with former senator Kent Conrad of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Commission on Retirement Security and Personal Savings.”

G. William Hoagland
SVP, Bipartisan Policy Center

Peter J. Wallison

“This country faces a significant problem now that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are back under government control in a Democratic administration. Jim Lockhart’s book will be invaluable to those concerned about the housing policies we will see from the Biden administration in the next three years."

Peter J. Wallison
Senior Fellow Emeritus, American Enterprise Institute

Charles Blahous

“Jim Lockhart has held key posts in some of the government’s most troubled agencies and remains clear-sighted about the challenges they face. Americans should be educated about the mounting problems he describes, and demand that their representatives enact necessary reforms.”

Charles Blahous
Deputy Director of the White House National Economic Council, Public Trustee for Social Security and Medicare


Underwater and Sinking

In America: Underwater and Sinking, James B. Lockhart, a former submarine officer with the US Navy who went on to play a large part in the government’s response to the Global Financial Crisis, tells an important story about managing government agencies that—in submarine parlance—are deep underwater, then provides solutions on how to help them and the overall government surface.

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