Former U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chairman Jay Clayton assumed the top boardroom seat at Apollo Global Management on Monday after founder Leon Black, the $455 billion management firm’s longtime CEO and chair, unexpectedly announced his departure.

  • In a press release, Apollo named Clayton as the new "non-executive chair of board."
  • Apollo co-founder Marc Rowan will replace Black as CEO.
  • Clayton joined Apollo's board in February as its lead independent director, quickly moving into the private sector after a three-year stint helming the SEC, the top U.S. investments regulatory body.
  • Clayton ran the SEC during its early blockade against a bitcoin exchange-traded fund, the crackdown on unregistered and fraudulent initial coin offerings and, in his final weeks, the initiation of the lawsuit against Ripple Labs.
  • Black had previously pledged to cede control of Apollo after fallout over his ties to convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, but he was expected to retain the chairmanship.
  • Monday, he credited health issues in explaining the full severance.
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