The U.S. Senate on Thursday confirmed two of President Barack Obama's senior leadership picks to head the Justice Department's tax office and the department’s internal watchdog, the Office of the Inspector General.
Michael Horowitz will take over as inspector general, replacing Glenn Fine, who announced his resignation in November 2010. Cynthia Schnedar has served as the acting head of the office, which investigates fraud and abuse in the department.
Horowitz, a former member of the U.S. Sentencing Commission, is leaving his partnership in the Washington office at Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, where he practiced in the business fraud and complex litigation group. He previously served in DOJ’s Criminal Division in the Clinton and Bush administrations.
Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. said in a prepared statement that Horowitz will “promote integrity, financial austerity and effectiveness in Department of Justice Operations.”
Meanwhile, the DOJ Tax Division, at long last, now has a leader. The Senate confirmed Kathryn Keneally as the assistant attorney general for the division. Obama’s first nominee, Mary Smith, withdrew her name amid Republican opposition. The president nominated Keneally in September.
Keneally joins DOJ from Fulbright & Jaworski’s New York office, where she has practiced in tax law for more than 25 years. Keneally has defended companies accused of tax, securities and bank fraud.
Holder said Keneally “will be integral to our efforts to enforce our nation’s tax laws fully and fairly.”