Who We Are

michaelbarrMichael Barr, Faculty Director
Roy F. and Jean Humphrey Proffitt Professor of Law, University of Michigan Law School
Professor of Public Policy, Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy

Michael S. Barr is the Roy F. and Jean Humphrey Proffitt Professor of Law at the University of Michigan Law School.  A member of the faculty since 2001, he teaches Financial Institutions, International Finance, Financial Derivatives, Transnational Law, and Jurisdiction and Choice of Law, and co-founded the International Transactions Clinic.  He was on leave from 2009 to 2010, serving as the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s assistant secretary for financial institutions, and was a key architect of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.  He currently is a nonresident senior fellow at the Center for American Progress and the Brookings Institution.  He is also a professor of public policy at the University of Michigan’s Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.

Professor Barr conducts large-scale empirical research regarding financial services, and researches and writes about a wide range of issues in financial regulation.  Recent books include Financial Regulation: Law and Policy (Foundation Press, 2016, co-authored with Howell E. Jackson and Margaret E. Tahyar), No Slack: The Financial Lives of Low-Income Americans (Brookings Press, 2012), Insufficient Funds: Savings, Assets, Credit and Banking Among Low-Income Households (Russell Sage, 2009, co-edited with Rebecca Blank), and Building Inclusive Financial Systems (Brookings Press, 2007, co-edited with Anjali Kumar and Robert Litan).

Professor Barr previously served as Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin’s special assistant, as deputy assistant secretary of the Treasury, as special adviser to President William J. Clinton, as a special adviser and counselor on the policy planning staff at the U.S. Department of State, and as a law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice David H. Souter and the Hon. Pierre N. Leval, then of the Southern District of New York.

He received his JD from Yale Law School, his MPhil in international relations as a Rhodes Scholar from Magdalen College, Oxford University, and his BA, summa cum laude, with honors in history, from Yale University.


CAB-editedChristie Ayotte Baer, Assistant Executive Director

Christie Ayotte Baer is the Assistant Executive Director for the University of Michigan’s Center on Finance, Law and Policy. Prior to joining the Center in July of 2016, Baer was an attorney in private practice in Atlanta and Savannah, Georgia at the firm she founded and owned. In that role, Baer managed all aspects of the firm’s operations, from finance to staffing, while representing clients in high-conflict litigation throughout Georgia.

In addition to her legal experience, Baer has extensive experience in policy, political organizing, and non-profit work.

Baer received her JD from Emory University School of Law and her BA in Sociology from Smith College.


Jeremy-Kress_editedJeremy Kress, Senior Research Fellow
Lecturer, University of Michigan’s Stephen M. Ross School of Business 

Jeremy Kress is a lecturer at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business.  Previously, Kress was an attorney in the banking regulation and policy group at the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in Washington, D.C.  In that capacity, Kress drafted rules to implement provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act and Basel III, including enhanced risk-management standards for systemically important financial institutions.  Kress also advised the Board on the legal permissibility of bank mergers and acquisitions, with a focus on institutions subject to regulatory consent orders and transactions that affect financial stability.

Kress is also a lecturer in the at University of Michigan’s Law School, where he co-taught Financial Regulation with Prof. Barr. He served as assistant executive director of the Center on Finance, Law, and Policy from 2015 to 2016.www.michiganross.umich.edu

Kress graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School and from the Harvard Kennedy School, where he was a Presidential Scholar.  Kress holds a BBA from U-M’s Ross School of Business.  Kress clerked for the Hon. Matthew Leitman of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan.  His written work has appeared in the Harvard Journal on Legislation, Bloomberg Corporate Law Journal, and Administrative Science Quarterly.