John F. Finston, formerly head of the insurance regulation practice at law firm SNR Denton, has accepted an appointment to be Deputy Commissioner for Corporate & Regulatory Affairs at the California Department of Insurance, effective January 17.
At SNR Denton, Finston addressed insurance regulatory, insolvency and transactional issues for insurance companies and their customers.
Finston will serve as a top advisor to California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones on issues related to state, federal and international oversight of insurance and reinsurance. He will also manage and lead the Department's Corporate Affairs Bureau, which is responsible for reviewing corporate and holding company transactions requiring Department approval. Finston also will collaborate closely with the Financial Surveillance Branch, which is responsible for making sure that transactions subject to the Department's review are financially sound and that insurance companies remain solvent.
"Increasing globalization of markets, including insurance markets, requires even more national and international collaboration and cooperation between and among state and foreign countries' insurance regulators," Commissioner Jones said in a press release. "Global turmoil in the banking sector, which by and large was avoided in the insurance sector thanks to the success of our national system of state-based regulation, has led to a renewed emphasis on improving international regulatory cooperation in the insurance sector. National and global insurance transactions have become increasingly complex and the regulatory system will need to adapt and improve to continue to effectively supervise the insurance industry. Protecting consumers becomes even more challenging as we navigate these changes … John Finston brings to my leadership team his nationally recognized expertise and years of experience with insurance regulation and international and national insurance transactions."
According to the Department press release, Finston is a nationally recognized expert in reinsurance and insurance insolvency. He also is an expert in financial surveillance, insurance company formation, regulatory compliance, and holding company compliance. He has extensive experience with rates and forms, as well as market conduct review.