Felecia Rotellini is a veteran prosecutor and consumer advocate...
...with 27 years of experience in private and public law. Although best known for her work on the Baptist Foundation of Arizona (BFA) case, she already had earned a reputation as a fair and fierce financial watchdog and criminal prosecutor.
“I want to make Arizona safer for families, children and law-abiding businesses,” says Rotellini. “We need new direction in the Attorney General’s Office – a top law enforcement officer committed to rising above partisan politics. We need an Attorney General to fight criminals whether they carry a gun or a pen, human smugglers and traffickers, those who don’t play by the rules, and scammers who defraud our seniors.
“The Attorney General should be an independent watchdog, not a career politician that promotes himself or is accused of violating laws he is supposed to enforce. The circus act has to stop; we must restore integrity back into the Attorney General’s Office.”
The daughter of first generation Americans, Felecia Rotellini grew up in Sheridan, Wyoming and graduated Magna Cum Laude from Rocky Mountain College in Billings, Montana. Arizona has been her home since 1986 after her graduation from Notre Dame Law School. She is a member of the Arizona and Wyoming State Bars. From 1990 to 2002, she was a trustee of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Metropolitan Phoenix Foundation, serving two terms as president.
In 1992, after six years in private practice as a trial attorney, Felecia joined the Arizona Attorney General’s Office, serving under Attorneys General Grant Woods, Janet Napolitano and Terry Goddard. She worked in both the Civil and Criminal Divisions, prosecuting complex real estate and financial fraud and appearing before the State Grand Jury, and state and federal courts in Arizona and California. Known for her willingness to take on the "Goliath" companies — who have unlimited resources for defense costs — she earned a reputation as a tireless advocate and a voice for victims of consumer and financial fraud.
Beginning in 1999, Felecia was the State’s lead litigator in its investigation of Arthur Andersen over the accounting giant’s services to the Baptist Foundation of Arizona (BFA). The result was a global settlement that returned $217 million to investors who had been cheated in a complex Ponzi scheme.
In 2006, Governor Napolitano appointed Felecia as Superintendent of the State Banking Department, now the Department of Financial Institutions (DFI). Felecia quickly recognized that the developing crisis in home mortgage lending posed the greatest threat to Arizona. Her goals were twofold: beef up enforcement and make loan officers that work with consumers responsible for what they say and do. Partnering with HUD, she formed the Mortgage Fraud Task Force that united regulatory agencies and city, state and federal law enforcement.
In August 2009, Felecia received the "Excellence in Cooperative Law Enforcement" Award, from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, for her agency’s participation in "Operation Cash Back" that indicted 36 individuals involved in mortgage fraud. Under her leadership, the FBI invited DFI to join the new Phoenix Financial Crimes and Mortgage Fraud Task Force — the first time a state regulator has been invited to join an FBI task force.
Fighting off the lobbying efforts of national companies, such as AIG and Countrywide, from 2006–2008, Felecia worked with the Arizona Legislature and leaders in the mortgage industry to pass a law that requires mortgage loan officers to be licensed — now only qualified, competent persons of good character can work with borrowers to get a home loan.
In late August 2009, Felecia resigned her post as Superintendent to join the Phoenix law firm of Zwillinger & Greek PC. She has practiced in the private sector since then.
In 2010, Felecia ran for Arizona Attorney General. She was the top Democratic vote-getter in Arizona. In February, 2013, Felecia announced that she is running for Attorney General in 2014.