two businesspeople shaking hands in silhouette

The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) has a new chief, as former vice chair Grant Vingoe formally takes over as acting chair and CEO.

Vingoe officially took the reins at the OSC on April 15, replacing Maureen Jensen.

Jensen was slated to serve until February 2021, but announced her plan to leave the post early in January.

Vingoe will serve as acting chair of the country’s largest regulator for the next year.

The leadership changeover comes in the wake of massive market volatility brought on by a global pandemic, which has caused huge economic disruption.

Canadian regulators have been responding to the turmoil with a series of actions designed to enable issuers and industry firms to cope with the fallout.

Regulators have pushed back the implementation deadlines for the client-focused reforms, extended policy consultations, granted firms filing extensions, and suspended late filing fees until June 1.

The regulators have largely shifted to working remotely and have cancelled or postponed planned face-to-face meetings and events.

“At this time of unprecedented change, I am firmly focused on the importance of regulation to the economic health of our province and the protection of Ontarians,” Vingoe said in a statement.

“We are committed to building on chair Maureen Jensen’s success and being a source of stability during this period of uncertainty.”

A provincial government task force is currently carrying out a review of securities regulation that will likely lead to reform recommendations — in addition to the OSC’s own efforts over the past year to find ways to reduce regulatory burdens.

“We look forward to receiving the findings of the Capital Markets Modernization Taskforce whose members are working diligently on recommendations to reform the capital markets in Ontario. We welcome this opportunity to thoughtfully consider our focus and approach,” Vingoe said.

Ontario Finance Minister Rod Phillips thanked Jensen for her leadership at the commission.

“Her dedication and commitment has allowed Ontario to continue to grow as one of the world’s leading capital markets. In particular, I appreciate her work to reduce unnecessary regulatory burden and promote greater gender diversity on boards,” he said in a statement.

Prior to joining the OSC, Vingoe was a partner with international law firms in Toronto and New York.