George W. Madison

George W. Madison is a Partner Sidley Austin LLP and the former general counsel at the Department of Treasury.  He was nominated to be the 30th general counsel of the Department of the Treasury by President Barack Obama on April 20, 2009. He was confirmed unanimously by the U.S. Senate and sworn into office on September 9, 2009, and served in that position until 2012.  As general counsel, Madison served as the chief law officer of the department and a senior policy advisor to the secretary of the Treasury. He headed the department’s Legal Division, which consists of approximately 2,000 lawyers within the department’s headquarters, and  the Internal Revenue Service, the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, the Bureau of Public Debt, the Financial Management Service, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund, the U.S. Mint, and the Bureau of Engraving and Printing.  Madison served as a government member of the Administrative Conference from 2010 until he resigned his position at the Department of Treasury.

Prior to serving at Treasury, Madison was the Executive Vice President and General Counsel of TIAA-CREF and a member of its Executive Management Team. Madison joined the company in 2003 after six and a half years as executive vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary at Comerica Incorporated, where he also served as a member of Comerica’s management policy committee and management council. Madison was previously a partner in the law firm of Mayer, Brown & Platt in New York (currently known as Mayer, Brown), practicing banking and structured finance law on behalf of foreign and domestic money center banks. Before joining Mayer, Brown & Platt in 1987, Madison was an associate with the law firm of Shearman & Sterling in New York. He also served as law clerk to the Honorable Nathaniel R. Jones at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in Cincinnati. During Madison’s tenure at Comerica in Detroit, he was appointed vice chairman of the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation by then Mayor Dennis Archer. He also was a member of the board of trustees of the Henry Ford Health System and served as chairman of its subsidiary, Health Alliance Plan, Inc., one of Michigan’s largest health maintenance organizations.

Madison holds a B.S. from New York University’s Stern School of Business, a J.D. from Columbia Law School and an M.B.A. from Columbia Business School.


  • Partner, Sidley Austin LLP