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Corporate Whistleblowing in 2021


Speaker(s): Arian M. June, Christopher Ehrman, Jane Norberg, Jason Zuckerman, Jill L. Rosenberg, Jonathan Carr, Jordan A. Thomas, Michael Delikat, Michael Filoromo, Sarah E. Bouchard, Steven J. Pearlman, Teri M. Wigger, Thad M. Guyer
Recorded on: Jun. 30, 2021
PLI Program #: 305136

Christopher Ehrman is the Director of the Whistleblower Office at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.  Section 748 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act established a whistleblower program under which the CFTC will pay awards, based on collected monetary sanctions, to eligible whistleblowers who voluntarily provide original information about violations of the Commodity Exchange Act that lead either to a “covered judicial or administrative action” or a “related action.”

Mr. Ehrman formerly served as an Assistant Director in the Office of Market Intelligence at the Securities and Exchange Commission. In that role, he oversaw the processing, review and assignment of all tips, complaints and referrals received by the SEC.  Mr. Ehrman also formerly served as the Co-National Coordinator for the Microcap Fraud Working Group, a cross-divisional specialized group charged with creating novel ways to detect, disrupt and prosecute fraud relating to securities quoted on the OTC Market.  Prior to joining OMI, Mr. Ehrman worked in a variety of other roles within the SEC’s Division of Enforcement, including Branch Chief, Senior Counsel, and Staff Attorney.

Mr. Ehrman is a graduate of Miami University and the University of Kentucky College of Law.


Jane Norberg is a Partner in the Securities Enforcement & Litigation Practice at Arnold & Porter.  Jane brings to her practice extensive experience as Chief of the Office of the Whistleblower of the Securities and Exchange Commission, having helped build and develop the SEC’s whistleblower program since near its inception.  Under Jane’s leadership, the SEC received record numbers of whistleblower tips and paid out record breaking awards.

Jane’s practice at Arnold & Porter focuses on advising clients on all aspects of whistleblower matters. This includes helping companies navigate complexities related to whistleblower reports and issues of all kinds; counseling companies on best practices for handling internal whistleblower reports; proactively assessing and mitigating risk; conferring with respect to emerging whistleblower issues; internal and external investigations; advising on best practices related to retaliation and impeding reporting to regulators; assisting the company in its response and defense to specific whistleblower allegations; and providing crisis management to mitigate reputational risk.

During her tenure at SEC, Jane advised the SEC Chairman and the Director of the Division of Enforcement on emerging whistleblower issues and the development of rulemaking and policies, as well as reported to Congress regarding the program’s activities and advised them on whistleblower matters. She joined the Securities and Exchange Commission in 2012 as Deputy Chief of the Office and was appointed to Chief in 2016.

Under her leadership, Jane managed an expansion of the Office’s staff and oversaw a record-breaking growth in the number of whistleblower tips received and awards issued to whistleblowers under the program. Jane has extensive experience and knowledge regarding whistleblower retaliation and agreements that impede reporting in violation of Exchange Act Rule 21F-17, having directly advised on all whistleblower protection cases brought by the SEC during her tenure. Jane had a substantial advisory role related to the amendments to the SEC’s whistleblower rules, and has conferred with and advised other domestic and international regulators related to the development of new whistleblower programs.  Jane also co-led a diversity and inclusion initiative across the SEC Division of Enforcement.

Jane is a sought after speaker and subject matter expert with respect to whistleblower-related issues and speaks regularly on the topic.

 


Jill L. Rosenberg, an employment partner at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP in New York, is a nationally recognized employment litigator and counselor.  Ms. Rosenberg has significant experience defending and advising employers in discrimination, sexual harassment, whistleblowing, wrongful discharge, affirmative action, wage-and-hour and traditional labor matters.  She handles complex individual cases, as well as class actions and systemic government investigations.  She represents a broad range of companies, with a focus on employers in the securities industry, banks and financial institutions, accounting firms and law firms. 

Ms. Rosenberg also has particular expertise in the representation of nonprofit entities, including colleges, universities, hospitals, foundations and cultural institutions.  She frequently speaks on employment law issues for employer and bar association groups. 

Ms. Rosenberg has been recognized by Chambers USA and Global as a Band 1 leading employment lawyer. Ms. Rosenberg is the firm-wide Partner in Charge of Pro Bono Programs and serves on the firm’s Personnel Development and Risk Management Committees.   She is the Chair of the Board of Directors of New York Legal Assistance Group, a legal services organization serving New Yorkers in need. 

Ms. Rosenberg graduated from Princeton University, and earned her J.D. from The University of Chicago Law School.


Michael Filoromo leads the Philadelphia office of Katz, Marshall & Banks, LLP, where he represents whistleblowers.

Mr. Filoromo has achieved successful outcomes under whistleblower incentive programs, including a $2.4 million award for a client through the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) whistleblower program, one of the first 50 awards the SEC issued. More recently, he represented a whistleblower in a qui tam lawsuit against Medicrea, a medical device company. In May 2021, Medicrea paid a total of $2 million to settle allegations that it violated anti-kickback statutes and failed to disclose payments it made to healthcare providers. Mr. Filoromo’s client received 22 percent of the False Claims Act proceeds.

Mr. Filoromo has litigated whistleblower retaliation cases in federal and state courts and the U.S. Department of Labor. He regularly represents clients in claims brought under the Sarbanes-Oxley corporate whistleblower protections, the False Claims Act anti-retaliation provisions, and the anti-discrimination and retaliation protections of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act and corresponding state laws. He also frequently represents whistleblowers in the aviation, nuclear, pharmaceutical, and healthcare industries.

In acknowledgement of his achievements, Mr. Filoromo was recognized in the 2020 and 2021 editions of Best Lawyers in America for his work in the area of qui tam law, and as a Pennsylvania "Rising Star" by Super Lawyers from 2019-2021. Also in 2020, The Legal Intelligencer named Mr. Filoromo a “Pennsylvania Trailblazer,” an annual award honoring attorneys who are agents of change in their legal communities.

As President of the Eastern Pennsylvania Chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association, Mr. Filoromo leads an organization of approximately 80 plaintiff-side employment attorneys, developing educational and networking events, coordinating amicus briefing on issues important to the rights of workers, and organizing policy outreach on key local and state legislation and judicial nominations. Additionally, Mr. Filoromo serves as the Employee Vice-Chair of Outreach to New and Young Lawyers Committee of the ABA’s Labor and Employment Section, which promotes participation in courses aimed at young and new attorneys. He is also the Co-Chair of the Sarbanes-Oxley Subcommittee of the section’s Federal Labor Standards Legislation Committee.

Mr. Filoromo contributed to Whistleblower Law: A Practitioner’s Guide, a treatise published in 2016 by American Legal Media (ALM) that is updated twice per year. He also authored a chapter for the ALM book New York Employment Law, originally published in 2017 and updated annually.  He regularly writes and speaks on whistleblower law topics.

Mr. Filoromo is admitted to practice in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and the District of Columbia.

 


Sarah Bouchard helps companies respond to workplace crisis situations.  She litigates highly sensitive and complex harassment, whistleblower, noncompetition, and trade secret matters across the United States. As co-leader of the firm’s whistleblower group, Sarah routinely handles litigation and litigation avoidance related to regulatory issues under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, Dodd-Frank Act, False Claims Act, and Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.  She is adept at leading internal investigations related to workplace misconduct, including sexual harassment, advising employers on appropriate responses and remediation measures, and defending companies in employment lawsuits and related matters.

Sarah’s whistleblower experience includes litigating numerous cases before the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), administrative law judges, and federal courts. She defends clients against allegations involving complex regulatory and compliance issues, including value-added tax (VAT) treatment and free trade zone issues; inventory booking and corresponding implications on quarterly earnings reports; accurate revenue accounting treatment; proper internal control procedures; and stock option agreements and compensation models. On behalf of Morgan Lewis, she has published comments to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on the Dodd-Frank whistleblower program, and is a frequent speaker on Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) and Dodd-Frank whistleblower issues.

Sarah also advises employers on the preemptive creation of crisis management plans before harassment allegations are made, and she advises on workplace culture assessments to evaluate companies’ policies, practices, and processes for handling sexual harassment and other workplace complaints. Sarah has handled workplace harassment investigations and counseled on workplace crises for employers in the financial services, legal services, and media and entertainment industries.

A seasoned litigator with first- and second-chair trial experience in numerous matters, Sarah handles cases alleging violations of employment laws, including individual, US national, and regional collective class actions under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and state wage and hour laws. She also litigates noncompete and trade secret matters for clients across the United States, most recently in the medical device and technology sectors.

Sarah also routinely advises employers on sexual harassment, employee leave rights, wage and hour compliance, and litigation avoidance, conducting training and internal audits related to these issues. Sarah is the labor and employment practice leader for the Philadelphia office.


Thad Guyer is based in Saigon, and during the pandemic in Seattle, and has over 30 years of litigation experience representing whistleblowers against governments, international organizations, and Fortune 500 companies.  As Adjunct Senior Litigation Counsel for the Government Accountability Project in Washington, DC, he has argued cases in state and federal trial and appellate courts nationwide, and in the tribunals of the United Nations, World Bank, International Labour Organization (Geneva), and Latin American and African Development Banks. He has represented whistleblowers assigned to projects and missions in Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, South Asia, East Asia, and Europe.  In addition to CLEs on whistleblower rights and corporate compliance in the U.S., he has been a speaker in Tokyo, Saigon, Beijing, Hong Kong, Rome, Paris and Bratislava.

Mr. Guyer is also a partner with T.M. Guyer and Ayers & Friends, PC.


A principal architect of the SEC Whistleblower Program, in 2011, Jordan Thomas established the nation’s first whistleblower practice exclusively focused on violations of the federal securities laws.  Both a pioneer and recognized leader in the field, Jordan has been profiled in The New York Times and on NPR.  His clients have secured precedent-setting whistleblower awards and have launched many of the SEC’s most high-profile cases.

To date, his clients won the largest single-case SEC whistleblower award in history, more than $83 million for reporting misconduct at Merrill Lynch, which led to its $415 million settlement with the Commission.  In addition to significant monetary recoveries, among his many landmark cases, he successfully represented the first officer of a public company to win an SEC whistleblower award, the first SEC whistleblower to receive criminal immunity, and the first SEC whistleblower to receive a whistleblower award because his company retaliated against him.  The pipeline is robust, including what will likely be another top SEC whistleblower award in connection with the $267 million SEC enforcement action against JPMorgan.

A longtime public servant and seasoned trial lawyer, Jordan joined Labaton Sucharow from the Securities and Exchange Commission where he served as an Assistant Director, and previously, as an Assistant Chief Litigation Counsel in the Division of Enforcement.  He had a leadership role in the development of the SEC Whistleblower Program, including leading fact-finding visits to other federal agencies with whistleblower programs, drafting the proposed legislation and implementing rules, and briefing House and Senate staffs on the proposed legislation.  Throughout his tenure at the SEC, where he investigated, litigated, and supervised a wide variety of enforcement matters, Jordan was assigned to many of its highest-profile actions such as those involving Enron, Fannie Mae, UBS, and Citigroup.  His SEC enforcement cases have resulted in monetary sanctions and relief for harmed investors in excess of $35 billion.

Prior to joining the Commission, Jordan was a Trial Attorney at the Department of Justice where he specialized in complex financial services litigation involving the FDIC and Office of Thrift Supervision.  He began his legal career as a Navy Judge Advocate on active duty and recently retired as a Captain in its Reserve Law Program.  While in law school, he worked as a stockbroker.

Jordan served as the Chair of the Investor Rights Committee of the District of Columbia Bar and a board member of the City Bar Fund, the pro bono affiliate of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York.

Jordan is a nationally sought after writer, speaker, and media commentator on securities enforcement, corporate ethics, and whistleblower issues.

Jordan understands the importance of the anonymity of his clients. With this in mind, Jordan gives clients the option to communicate through secure and encrypted applications such as Signal, Telegram, and WhatsApp.

He is admitted to practice in the District of Columbia and the states of Connecticut, New Mexico, New York, and Virginia.


Arian M. June is a litigation partner based in the firm’s Washington, D.C. office and is a member of the White Collar & Regulatory Defense Group. Recognized as one of 25 Influential Black Women in Business by The Network Journal (2020) and by Benchmark Litigation’s 40 and Under Hotlist (2021), Ms. June’s practice focuses on government and internal investigations, securities enforcement defense, whistleblower response, sensitive investigations, crisis management and white collar criminal defense. She has represented financial institutions, publicly traded companies, investment advisers and senior executives in complex regulatory matters, including allegations of securities fraud, insider trading, accounting and corporate disclosure issues, violations of the Bank Secrecy Act, cyber-intrusions and sales practices violations, including matters involving foreign exchange products and the distribution of life insurance products. Ms. June advises clients on various facets of the Dodd-Frank Act, with particular emphasis in designing corporate policies and procedures to comply with the Dodd-Frank Whistleblower regulations, investigating corporate whistleblower reports and mitigating whistleblower-related risks. In addition to her white collar practice, Ms. June also advises boards of corporations, educational institutions and other organizations in sensitive investigations, including board-directed independent inquiries of allegations involving sexual misconduct, racial intolerance and related matters. 

Ms. June speaks and writes frequently on topics of importance to her practice area. She has authored or co-authored articles for publications such as Bloomberg BNA Securities Regulation & Law Report, Bloomberg BNA World Securities Law Report, Law360, Journal of Investment Compliance and The Hill. Ms. June is co-editor-in-chief of the firm’s Accounting & Financial Reporting Enforcement Round-Up.

Ms. June has served in a variety of professional leadership roles, including as a Fellow to the American Bar Foundation, a Board Member of the District of Columbia Bar Board of Governors, a member of the Board of Trustees for the Washington Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs and Vice Chair for the Federal Regulation of Securities Committee of the American Bar Association Business Law Section. She was also recently appointed to the Board of Directors of the National Health Law Program.

Ms. June joined Debevoise in 2017. She was previously a counsel at an international Washington, D.C.-based firm. She received her J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, where she served as a senior editor of the University of Pennsylvania Law Review. She earned a B.A. cum laude at the University of Maryland. Ms. June served as a law clerk to Chief Judge Royce C. Lamberth, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.


Jason Zuckerman litigates whistleblower retaliationwhistleblower rewards, wrongful discharge, and other employment-related claims, and authors the Whistleblower Protection Law Blog. His broad experience includes practicing employment law at a national law firm, serving as a Principal at The Employment Law Group, and serving as Senior Legal Advisor to the Special Counsel at the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, the federal agency charged with protecting whistleblowers in the federal government. In 2012, the Secretary of Labor appointed Zuckerman to serve on the Whistleblower Protection Advisory Committee, which makes recommendations to the Secretary of Labor to improve OSHA’s administration of federal whistleblower protections.

At OSC, Zuckerman worked on several high-profile investigations, including a whistleblower retaliation case resulting in the removal of an Inspector General.  He also took an active role in the agency’s implementation of the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act, expanded the agency’s outreach program, and drafted amicus curiae briefs on key issues concerning federal employee whistleblower rights and protections.

Zuckerman is rated 10 out of 10 by Avvo, based largely on client reviews, and rated AV Preeminent® by Martindale-Hubbell based on peer reviews.  He was recognized by Washingtonian magazine as a “Top Whistleblower Lawyer” in 2015, and selected by his peers to be included in The Best Lawyers in America® in the category of employment law (2011-2017).

He has lectured extensively on whistleblower law and employment law, especially on Dodd-Frank, Sarbanes-Oxley and False Claims Act actions, and has written several articles on whistleblower protections. Zuckerman co-authored a chapter on litigating whistleblower cases for Whistleblowing: The Law of Retaliatory Discharge, drafted a chapter on the D.C. Whistleblower Protection Act for the D.C. Practice Manual, and is a contributing author to The International Handbook on Whistleblowing Research.

For nearly a decade, Zuckerman has been a contributing author to an annual update on the whistleblower protection provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act published by the ABA Fair Labor Standards Legislation Committee. Zuckerman’s articles have been cited in various treatises and in a federal court opinion on the scope of Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower protection. Zuckerman has trained administrative law judges, agency EEO directors, senior OIG officials and delegations from more than 30 countries on federal whistleblower protections.

Zuckerman serves as Co-Chair of the Whistleblower Subcommittee of the ABA Labor and Employment Section’s Employee Rights and Responsibilities Committee and served as Co-Chair of the National Employment Lawyers Association’s Whistleblower Committee, Co-Chair of the Sarbanes-Oxley Subcommittee of the ABA Labor and Employment Fair Labor Standards Legislation Committee, Co-Chair of the Whistleblower Committee of the District of Columbia Bar’s Labor and Employment Section, and member of Law 360’s Employment Editorial Advisory Board.

Zuckerman graduated Phi Beta Kappa and magna cum laude from Georgetown University and received his law degree from the University of Virginia, where he served as Articles Editor of the Virginia Journal of Law and Technology.  He is admitted to practice before the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia bars, the United States Supreme Court, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second, Fourth, and Federal Circuits, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, and the United States District Court for the District of Maryland.


Jonathan Carr is an Assistant Director in the Office of the Whistleblower (Division of Enforcement) at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington, D.C.  Prior to serving as an Assistant Director, he worked as a counsel to two SEC Commissioners and as an investigations counsel in the Division of Enforcement.  He joined the SEC in 2016 after practicing for over eight years at two international law firms in Washington, D.C., where he served as an associate and of counsel.  Mr. Carr received a Bachelor of Arts (Phi Beta Kappa) from the University of Virginia; a Master of Science (Fulbright Scholar) from the London School of Economics; and a law degree from Duke University.  Before entering private practice, Mr. Carr clerked for the Honorable Emmett R. Cox of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.  


Michael Delikat, a partner in the New York office, was the previous Chair of Orrick's Global Employment Law Practice for over twenty years, which has employment law teams in the European Union, Asia as well as the United States.

He also is the founder of the firm’s Whistleblower Task Force. He previously served as the Managing Director of Orrick’s Litigation Division.

Under Mike's leadership, Orrick’s Employment Law & Litigation group was recently named Labor & Employment Department of the Year in California for the fourth consecutive year by The Recorder, the premier source for legal news, in recognition of their significant wins on behalf of leading multinational companies on today’s most complex and challenging employment law matters. The practice group has also been chosen as one of the top national employment law practices by Law 360. Chambers USA and Chambers Global has ranked him in Band 1 since it began publishing its rankings, noting he is a "giant of the employment bar, widely regard as an expert in whistleblowing matters and sex harassment claims","sought out by premier clients to handle high-stakes employment litigation and investigations," and "a very persuasive advocate who knows the law inside out and is able to get to the heart of the issue very quickly."

He represents a broad range of major corporations and other institutions including law firms in all facets of labor and employment law. Mike has an active trial, arbitration and appellate practice and handles a number of high-visibility class action and impact cases. 

He currently has an active practice representing a number of major corporations in the defense of Sarbanes-Oxley Act and other whistleblower claims and is the coauthor of the only extensive treatise published on whistleblowing and internal investigations,  Corporate Whistleblowing in the Sarbanes-Oxley/Dodd-Frank Era. He is regularly retained by boards of directors and audit committees to conduct high exposure internal investigations of corporate wrongdoing.

Mike is published and quoted frequently on a variety of employment law issues in major academic and business publications and is a frequent speaker at national and international programs. He is the outgoing management chair of the ABA International Employment Law Committee. He also is an Advisory Board Member of the Harvard Law School Program on Corporate Governance.  About the HLS Forum on Corporate Governance (harvard.edu)


Steven J. Pearlman is a partner in the Labor & Employment Law Department and co-head of the Whistleblowing & Retaliation Group. Steven’s practice covers the full spectrum of employment law, with a focus on claims of discrimination, retaliation and harassment, restrictive covenant violations, wage-and-hour violations, whistleblower retaliation and breach of contract. He defends class and collective actions, as well as single-plaintiff actions. He has successfully tried cases in multiple jurisdictions, and defended what is reported to be one of the largest Illinois-only class actions in the history of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Reporting to boards of directors and their audit committees, he conducts sensitive investigations and has testified in defense of investigations in federal court.

Chambers describes Steven as an “outstanding lawyer” who is “very sharp and very responsive.” Steven was 1 of 12 individuals selected by Compliance Week as a "Top Mind."  Earlier in his career, he was 1 of 5 U.S. lawyers selected by Law360 as a "Rising Star Under 40" in the area of employment law and 1 of "40 Illinois Attorneys Under Forty to Watch" selected by Law Bulletin Publishing Company. Steven is a Burton Award Winner (U.S. Library of Congress) for "Distinguished Legal Writing." He was elected as a Fellow to the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers.

Steven has served on Law360’s Employment Editorial Advisory Board and is a Contributor to Forbes.com. He has appeared on Bloomberg News (television and radio) and Yahoo! Finance, and is regularly quoted in leading publications such as The Wall Street Journal.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has engaged Steven to serve as lead counsel on amicus briefs to the U.S. Supreme Court and federal circuit courts. He was appointed to serve as a Special Assistant Attorney General for the State of Illinois in employment litigation matters. He has presented with the Solicitor of the DOL, the Acting Chair of the EEOC, an EEOC Commissioner and heads of government whistleblower programs (SEC, CFTC and OSHA).


Teri M. Wigger is the Assistant Regional Administrator for OSHA’s Region 2 Whistleblower Protection Programs. Region 2’s geographical territory includes: New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The program enforces 23 whistleblower provisions the Secretary of Labor has been delegated the authority to investigate.

Teri is a graduate of Binghamton University with a degree in Political Science and a concentration in Public Policy. She started her career with OSHA in 1988 and as a Compliance Officer and was quickly recruited by the whistleblower program supervisor. Teri played a significant role in changing the culture of the railroad industry in the early days after Congress enacted the Federal Railroad Safety Act (FRSA), making a significant impact on the safety of this industry. Teri has also investigated egregious cases under the environmental statutes and was one of the early agency experts on cases under the Sarbanes Oxley Act.

In January of 2017, Teri received a Commendation Coin from the Assistant Secretary of OSHA for her leadership work on an agency “Tiger Team” which dealt with financial fraud whistleblower statutes. The Secretary of Labor gave Teri the Distinguished Career Service Award in 2016.