Assistant Treasury Secretary Michael Barr, who oversees the department's work on credit unions, banks and other financial institutions, plans to leave office by the end of the year to return to academia.

Barr, whose formal title is Assistant Treasury Secretary for Financial Institutions, was a key architect of the financial overhaul legislation passed by Congress earlier this year. He was also one of the Obama administration's main point people during negotiations with lawmakers.

Officials of CUNA, NAFCU and NASCUS met frequently with him during the shaping of the legislation. They described Barr as being willing to listen to arguments that were counter to those of the Obama administration but noted that he generally defended the administration's position vigorously.

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