Dodd-Frank handed Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner vast responsibilities as chairman of the new Financial Stability Oversight Council. The council has 15 members and the president still must nominate someone to represent the insurance industry. The reform law also created the Office of Financial Research to help spot the next crisis, and mandated its leader be appointed to serve a six-year term. A director has yet to be nominated.
Obama must replace two other officials who left recently: David Stevens as federal housing administrator and Neil Barofsky as the special inspector general for Tarp.
But perhaps the most important job Obama needs to fill isn't even open yet — chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.
Sheila Bair is leaving when her term expires this summer and it's likely vice chairman Marty Gruenberg will take over in an acting capacity.
The FDIC is implementing vital pieces of Dodd-Frank. Some of its work will be done jointly with the Fed, including the living-will rules that will govern how large companies are unwound in a failure.
In Dodd-Frank, Congress debated consolidating regulatory power into one agency, and decided against it.
But if Obama does not put strong leaders at the Comptroller's Office and the FDIC, then there may very well be a de facto consolidation, with the Fed calling the shots.
President Obama needs to focus on financial services, find the right people to fill these jobs and get the nominations to Capitol Hill. Sen. Shelby needs to stand aside and let the president assemble his team.