Kaitlin Caruso will depart from her position as acting director of the Division of Consumer Affairs to take a job in academia, effective Aug. 1.
Sean Neafsey, who currently serves as deputy director of the division’s Office of Consumer Protection, will take her post.
Caruso joined the DCR in 2018 as the deputy director for policy and strategic planning and then served as acting deputy director for the Office of Consumer Protection before taking the acting director post for the DCR earlier this year when then-Director Paul Rodriguez joined the Biden administration as general counsel to the United States Department of Health and Human Services.
“Kaitlin Caruso has been central to our efforts to build a stronger consumer financial protection agency than New Jersey has ever seen before, and helped guide the Division as it played a pivotal role in the State’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Attorney General Grewal on June 28. “I am grateful to Kaitlin for her dedication and wish her the best as she embarks on a new journey.”
Since her appointment, she’s overseen the DCR’s pandemic response work, and recently headed the revision and implementation of new guidance for a safe return to normalcy while managing the ongoing threat to public health.
Under Caruso’s leadership, the DCR has continued to investigate and pursue complex civil cases with a special emphasis on frauds and predatory practices that target vulnerable people.
Before joining the DCR, Caruso served as the chair of the Strategic Advocacy Committee and Senior Counsel for Strategic Advocacy at the New York City Law Department. She also worked in that Department’s Legal Counsel Division, for the New York City Council, in the Office of the Counsel to the Mayor of New York City and as an Assistant Attorney General in the Consumer Fraud Bureau of the Illinois Attorney General’s Office.
On her replacement, Grewal said Neafsey has “demonstrated tremendous talent and leadership ability” and that he’s “confident that his experience and knowledge will be a great asset as the Division continues to protect consumers.”
Prior to joining the DCR in 2020, Neafsey practiced law at Squire Patton Boggs, where he focused on representing companies in complex civil litigation and government investigations. Early on in his career, Neafsey served as a judicial law clerk to Supreme Court of New Jersey Associate Justice Virginia Long.