Helane Morrison and the Development of Compliance Officers

The focus of this article is on the fast-growing field of compliance officers, and how they can fix problems and prevent fraud. It is understandable that many people may not understand exactly what a compliance officer does. The job of a compliance officer is a relatively new job, that has been around for a short time and isn’t well known,
however the rankings are growing. The CEO of the Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics, Roy Snell, tried to help shed some light on this position. He explained that the corporate compliance officers job role is implementing of compliance programs in order to prevent, fix and find regulatory and ethical problems. And if there is a problem then they will do what it take’s to fix it, and set things in place to prevent the situation from happening again. It was said by Snell that the profession has grown within just 20 years, going from zero to tens of thousands in compliance officers in the vastly different functions. The role of compliance officers are generally not understood, and because of this are often misunderstood. Some myths that people have is that they are punitive and make up rules, neither of which are true. The job of compliance officers are normally found by accident, and often pull from accounting
and legal professionals when a need arises. Individuals that want to succeed in this profession need to contain people skills and technical skills. According to Snell, there is over a dozen universities that have formal degrees in those that
desire a challenging career as compliance officers. This is growing internationally and not just domestically. It is said by Snell that companies are not in need of more attorneys, risk assessors or auditors.

Helane Morrison, is one of the General Counsel, Managing Director and Chief Compliance Officer of Hall Capital Partners LLC. Before joining the firm in 2007, Morrison had been the head of the San Francisco Office for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission from 1999 to 2007. She was responsible for the litigation, securities enforcement and regulatory matters within Northern California, and five of the Northwest States. It was from 1996 to 1999 that she became the head of enforcement at the San Francisco SEC office. In this position she was in charge of the business, legal, and financial communities. While she was working at the Howard, Rice, Nemeroski, Canady, Falk & Rabkin firm from 1986 to 1996. She focused on the practice of defense of private securities actions, business litigation, and SEC matters.

In her early career, Ms. Morrison had received her B.S. from Northwestern University in Journalism. From this she went on to earn her J.D. from the University of California from Berkeley, School of Law, while there she was the Editor-In-Chief for the California Law Review. She is also a member of the Board for the Regional Parks Foundation, and has been made a member for the Hedge Fund Subcommittee of the American Bar Association. Morrison has also been periodic speaker within the topics of legal issues and compliance that were affecting the private funds and investment advisers. And before she entered private practice, she served as a law clerk to the Supreme Court Justice Harry A. Blackmun and Hun.

Visit Helane Morisson‘s profile on Crunchbase.

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