On 26 November 1921, Lenin sent a note to Viacheslav M. Molotov, for transmission to the Politburo, requesting that it appoint Gregorii Iakovlevich Sokolnikov a member of the Board of the People's Commissariat of Finance (PCF). The next day the Politburo approved this suggestion. Nikolai Krestinskii, the Left Communist who had served as people's commissar of finance since July 1918 and who oversaw the virtual dismantling of that ministry, had become the Soviet diplomatic representative in Germany. Although he would formally hold the title of people's commissar of finance until December 1922, Krestinskii had ceased to play a role in the PCF a year earlier. Sokolnikov quickly took over the ministry, especially after he became deputy commissar in January, at which time Lenin wrote Sokolnikov saying that he was “actually in charge of the most important people's commissariat.” Thus, although Sokolnikov officially became people's commissar of finance only in December 1922, he was de facto, if not de jure, in control from the beginning of 1922.