California Department of Financial Institutions Receives National Accreditation

Apr 5, 2011

San Francisco – Commissioner of Financial Institutions William S. Haraf announced today that the Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) has received professional accreditation from the Conference of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS), certifying that DFI maintains the highest standards and practices in state banking supervision.

“We are proud to receive this important certification as an accredited regulatory department. It is recognition from our peer state regulators of the expertise, efficiency and dedication of our staff and leadership,” said Commissioner Haraf. “The accreditation process provides an objective critical analysis of our ability to provide safe, sound and well-regulated financial institutions to meet the financial needs of California’s diverse economy and its citizens.”

DFI supervises 201 banks with assets of $255.1 billion, seven non-depository trust companies and 31 foreign banking operations.

The CSBS Accreditation Program identifies banking departments that serve the citizens of their state by operating a capable and professional regulatory program. DFI is required to complete annual reviews to maintain its accredited status and also undergo a complete re-accreditation process every five years. DFI was first accredited in 1990 and has maintained its accreditation for over twenty years.

The rigorous accreditation process begins with a self-evaluation, which reviews all aspects of the department’s operations, its mission, policies, procedures, funding, and statutory authority. A review team of veteran state and federal regulators visits the department to determine whether it can effectively fulfill its responsibility of chartering, regulating and supervising the state’s banks and bank holding companies. The review team reports its findings and makes a recommendation to CSBS’s Performance Standards Committee, which votes on the final accreditation decision.

CSBS president and CEO Neil Milner when announcing the accreditation said, “By achieving re-accreditation, Commissioner Haraf and his staff continue to exemplify their commitment to capable, effective supervision. The DFI’s dedication to supervision is beneficial for both the citizens and financial services providers of California.”

The Conference of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS) is the nationwide organization for state bank regulation, representing the bank regulators of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. State authorities supervise approximately 6,000 state-chartered financial institutions. CSBS is also responsible for improving the quality of state bank supervision by providing performance evaluation and accreditation programs for the banking departments, as well as supervisory education and training programs for state personnel. For additional information on CSBS, visit their Web site at:

Maintaining the integrity of financial services remains the primary mission of the DFI. The DFI oversees the secure operation of California’s state-chartered financial institutions. The DFI ensures public confidence in financial institutions by protecting the interests of depositors, borrowers, shareholders and consumers through enforcement of state laws. In addition to posting information about the DFI and its licensees, the DFI’s website features consumer tips on a variety of financial topics and consumer information brochures in seven languages. The DFI is a state regulatory department housed within the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency.

For more information about the DFI visit