Gov. Rick Scott and the Cabinet Tuesday are expected to appoint former Republican state Rep. Tom Grady of Naples to be the state's chief banking regulator. Grady, 53, will head the Office of Financial Regulation (OFR) and will take the place of Tom Cardwell, an Orlando lawyer. Grady is a good friend of Scott's, and the two men live on the same street in Naples.
The job of running OFR is obscure but important -- and not without political peril. Cardwell's predecessor, Don Saxon, was forced out in 2009 by then-Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink and Gov. Charlie Crist following a Miami Herald expose that revealed ineffective oversight of the mortgage broker industry.
Grady, an attorney, served one term in the House, from 2008 to 2010. He most recently made headlines for filing a class-action lawsuit against Crist, demanding refunds of campaign contributions after Crist switched his party affiliation from Republican to independent as a candidate for U.S. Senate.
-- Steve Bousquet