Path to Power
Kotz assumed his position after the resignation of his predecessor, Walter Stachnik. Stachnik left after a Senate report criticized his performance as not thorough enough in looking into the SEC's controversial battle with former SEC investigator Gary Aguirre.
Prior to joining the SEC, Kotz was inspector general at the Peace Corps, a position he assumed in February 2006. Kotz oversaw internal operations of Peace Corps programs in Washington, 11 regional offices and nearly 70 countries around the world. Before that he was an associate general counsel for the Peace Corps from 2002 to 2006.
The Madoff Investigation
Kotz led a very long investigation into the SEC's lack of oversight of jailed financier Bernard Madoff. He conducted more than 100 interviews and reviewed more than three million emails, eventually penning a 477-page report with more than 550 exhibits that tracked back to 1992 all the SEC Madoff examinations and tries to answer why the SEC wasn't able to uncover his crimes.
Kotz concluded that the SEC had ample opportunities to spot the Madoff Ponzi scheme. Because oflack of experience on the part of staffers (both in the area of fraud and in terms of time on the job) and a failure to scrutinize Madoff as closely as the agency should have, it failed.