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FinTech 2018


Speaker(s): Allen Brandt, Alma M. Angotti, Andras P. Teleki, Barbara A. Stettner, Bjorn J. Hall, Brian S. Trackman, Cathy Yoon, Daniel Alter, Daphna A. Waxman, Deborah Connor, Derek Newman, Dror Futter, Jeffrey S Davis, Jennifer G. Riegel, Jeremy Senderowicz, K. Susan Grafton, Lilya Tessler, Paul Stevens, Rochelle G Kauffman Plesset, Susan I. Gault-Brown
Recorded on: Aug. 13, 2018
PLI Program #: 220360

Alma Angotti is a Managing Director and Co-Head of the Global Investigations & Compliance practice. With over 25 years of regulatory practice, Ms. Angotti has held senior enforcement positions at the SEC, Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) and FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority). In these positions, she was responsible for conducting investigations involving securities fraud, insider trading, financial fraud, anti-money laundering (“AML”) and counter terrorist financing, market manipulation, investor and market protection, and other regulatory violations.  At FinCEN and FINRA, she designed and lead the AML enforcement programs.  She regularly worked with criminal prosecutors in a variety of jurisdictions and the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate and bring actions jointly.

Ms. Angotti has counselled her clients, large global financial institutions, multinational companies, smaller financial institutions, broker-dealers and Fintech companies, in a variety of projects, including gap analyses, compliance program reviews, risk assessments, remediation efforts, investigations and transaction reviews. Recently, she held interim senior compliance leadership positions at several global and regional financial institutions providing day-to-day management of their compliance programs and assisting them with implementing enhancements, often in the context of a regulatory or criminal enforcement action. 

She has trained and advised the financial services industry as well as other regulators and government officials worldwide on AML, sanctions, and combating the financing of terrorism (CFT) and other regulatory compliance issues.


András Teleki is the managing member of the Teleki AML and Cybersecurity Law Firm based in Washington, DC.  He also serves as the Chief Legal Officer and Head of Compliance for M3Sixty Administration and oversees internal and external firm legal and compliance matters.  András Teleki received his Juris Doctorate from Tulane Law School in 1998 and is admitted to practice in New York and the District of Columbia.   He is a frequent speaker on topics impacting the investment management industry. 

Prior to founding the Teleki AML and Cybersecurity Law Firm and joining M3Sixty, Mr. Teleki was a partner at the law firm of K&L Gates where he was a member of the Investment Management group from 2001 to 2015.  His practice focused on regulatory and compliance issues facing registered investment companies, including mutual funds and closed-end funds, broker-dealers, investment advisers, unregistered funds, variable insurance product issuers and distributors, and related service providers. He also advised insurance companies on variable insurance and other registered products and financial institutions on anti-money laundering, OFAC, cybersecurity, privacy, social media and financial technology issues. Mr. Teleki also has experience conducting internal investigations and working on regulatory enforcement matters with the SEC and FINRA.


Barbara Stettner is a member of A&O’s global Financial Services Regulatory practice and managing partner of the Washington, DC office. She represents banks, asset managers, broker-dealers, and other financial institutions on regulatory obligations in domestic and cross-border matters involving securities distributions and fundraising activities, including through crowdfunding platforms and over the blockchain, Fintech and virtual currency/ICO trading, lending and advisory platforms, and other regulatory matters under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, and the Bank Secrecy Act. Previously, Barbara was at the SEC’s Division of Trading and Markets, as Special Counsel in Office of the Chief Counsel, Attorney-Advisor in the Office of Risk Management, and Senior Counsel in the Office of International Affairs. According to Chambers USA, Barbara receives accolades for the reasoned regulatory compliance advice she provides to her clients: “she is a ‘real out-of-the-box thinker’ and is ‘one of the best to get in that area to answer your questions.’”


Daphna A. Waxman is a Senior Attorney in the Cyber Unit of the Division of Enforcement at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.  She joined the SEC in 2001 and has investigated and prosecuted enforcement actions involving registration violations, insider trading, market manipulation, and offering and accounting fraud.  As a member of the Cyber Unit, her work focuses on matters related to distributed ledger technology, digital assets, and initial coin offerings.  She also served as Special Counsel to the SEC’s Strategic Hub for Innovation and Financial Technology (FinHub) within the SEC’s Division of Corporate Finance from November through July 2019.  Ms. Waxman received her JD from Brooklyn Law School in 2001, where she served on the Law Review, and her undergraduate degree from Cornell University in 1998.


LILYA TESSLER is a partner and the New York head of Sidley’s FinTech and Blockchain group, which is recognized as a Band 2 practice in the 2020 Chambers Fintech guide. She focuses her practice on representing digital asset trading platforms, blockchain technology companies, U.S. and non-U.S. broker-dealers, financial services firms and cryptocurrency funds. Lilya is ranked in the 2020 Chambers Fintech guide in the USA Legal: Blockchain & Cryptocurrencies category and was named a “Rising Star” in Fintech by Law360 (2019).

Lilya advises technology companies on blockchain token offerings, including so-called ICOs. She also counsels financial institutions and digital asset exchanges with day-to-day securities issues, private placement agent requirements, custody rule requirements, cross-border regulatory issues, money services business registration requirements, as well as FINRA and SEC regulatory inquiries. She advises several U.S. and non-U.S. FinTech companies, including robo-advisors and high-frequency trading firms in evaluating the broker-dealer and investment adviser registration requirements.

Lilya is a member of Sidley’s global Securities Enforcement and Regulatory practice, which received the 2019 Chambers USA Award for “Financial Services Regulation,” and which was named the “Law Firm of the Year” for Securities Regulation in 2020 and 2017 by U.S. News – Best Lawyers. She works with transactional lawyers on structuring deals involving financial services and technology companies, digital asset exchanges and blockchain token offerings. She regularly assists both financial services firms and their vendors in negotiating U.S. and cross-border technology agreements for all types of services and considering the U.S. securities laws and broker-dealer regulatory issues associated with such technologies. Lilya has testified before the New Jersey Assembly Science, Innovation and Technology Committee on the economic development opportunities presented by blockchain technology innovation.

Lilya is a frequent speaker and writer on various topics in FinTech, with a particular focus on distributed ledger technology, blockchain tokens and digital asset trading platforms. She participated in the Legislating Certainty for Cryptocurrencies Roundtable hosted by Congressman Warren Davidson.

Lilya is the founder and co-chair of the Digital Asset Regulatory and Legal Alliance (DARLA), an industry working group consisting of General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officers of prominent blockchain and digital asset businesses. Lilya is a certified public accountant, FINRA dispute resolution arbitrator and previously held FINRA Series 7 and 24 licenses.

Prior to joining Sidley, Lilya was co-head of the FinTech and Blockchain Group and a leader of the broker-dealer practice at another global law firm.


Bjorn is the General Counsel of Fundrise.

Prior to joining Fundrise, Bjorn spent over 8 years practicing securities and general corporate law, primarily at O'Melveny & Myers LLP and Venable LLP in Washington, DC, with short stopovers at the Securities and Exchange Commission and a Russian steel corporation.

Bjorn received his B.A. in Political Science from the University of North Dakota, and his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center.


Daniel Alter is a Shareholder in the New York office of Murphy & McGonigle, P.C., who advises clients on a wide range of fintech regulatory matters and represents them in related litigation.  Previously, Danny was the first General Counsel for the New York Department of Financial Services and was one of the primary architects of New York’s regulatory scheme for virtual currencies.  He was also General Counsel to itBit (now Paxos), which is a New York Stated chartered trust company specializing in blockchain solutions for the financial services industry that also provides a fully regulated crypto exchange platform.


Deborah Connor is Chief of the Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section in the Criminal Division for the Department of Justice where she has served for more than three years. MLARS leads the Department’s asset forfeiture and anti-money laundering enforcement efforts, providing leadership in the prosecution and coordination of complex, sensitive, multi-district asset forfeiture investigations. In her role as chief, Deb supervises a section of over 80 prosecutors and 150 professionals responsible for civil and criminal enforcement of the money laundering statutes, forfeiture, and the Bank Secrecy Act. 

Deb has been a criminal prosecutor with the Department of Justice for over 22 years.  She served for more than 16 years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.  While at the United States Attorney’s office Deb supervised and tried more than 100 criminal cases.  In her last five years with the office Deborah served as the Chief of the Fraud and Public Corruption Section.  During her time at the U.S. Attorney’s Office Deborah also served as the Chief of the Asset Forfeiture Unit, and a Deputy Chief in the Office’s Federal Major Crimes Section.

Prior to joining the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Deb was a Trial Attorney in the Antitrust Division and an Associate at a large D.C. law firm.  Before attending law school, Deborah was an Assistant Vice President at a larger commercial bank in Chicago.  Deborah is a cum laude graduate of Georgetown University Law Center where she is also an Adjunct Professor teaching trial advocacy.


Mr. Newman serves as Senior Regulatory Counsel at Motley Fool Wealth Management, LLC.   He advises the company and its advisory affiliates on a variety of regulatory, corporate and business matters, including compliance with U.S. laws and regulations governing the operations of registered investment companies and investment advisers.

Before joining Fool Wealth, Mr. Newman served as Associate General Counsel with a global asset management firm, followed by an assignment in the SEC’s Division of Investment Management. Mr. Newman spent most of his career as a corporate and securities associate in the Washington, D.C. and Hong Kong offices of a prominent U.S. financial services law firm.


Mr. Trackman has a longstanding interest in law and technology.  He began his career conducting research in Central America to support digitalization and reform of the national land registries.  After work in private practice, Mr. Trackman joined the Securities and Exchange Commission, where he reviewed novel derivative securities products.  He was on the team that analyzed the Gold ETF, the first commodity asset-backed exchange traded fund, and developed standards to permit listing of similar products.  He later oversaw the registration program for alternative trading systems.  Following the financial crisis, Mr. Trackman contributed to the Dodd-Frank implementation effort at the SEC and then the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.  In 2017, Mr. Trackman joined the effort to help stand up the CFTC’s new innovation office, LabCFTC.  LabCFTC seeks to promote responsible innovation through engagement with innovators, education, and policy development.  Now as Senior Counsel to LabCFTC, Mr. Trackman advises on a wide range of fintech topics and provides thought leadership on potential impacts of new technology.


Ms. Jennifer Riegel is a special counsel in the Office of Small Business Policy in the Division of Corporation Finance of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.  The office assists companies seeking to raise capital through exempt or smaller registered offerings, and participates in and reviews SEC rulemaking and other actions that may affect small businesses.

Previously, Ms. Riegel served as a senior special counsel to the director of the Division of Corporation Finance and special counsel in the Office of Health Care and Insurance.  Prior to joining the SEC, Ms. Riegel practiced corporate and securities law at the Palo Alto office of Cooley LLP. 

She received her law degree, summa cum laude, from Santa Clara University School of Law and her B.A. in political science, cum laude, from Boston University.


Rochelle Kauffman Plesset is a Senior Counsel in the Chief Counsel's Office in the SEC’s Division of Investment Management. During her long career at the SEC, Rochelle has been involved in all aspects of investment company and investment adviser regulation, participating in a variety of rulemaking and interpretive initiatives for the Division. Notably, she drafted rules under the Investment Company Act that address the status of asset-backed issuers and investment advisory programs under that Act. Rochelle was primarily responsible for researching and drafting Chapter 1, The Treatment of Structured Finance under the Investment Company Act, in the Division’s report, Protecting Investors: A Half Century of Investment Company Act Regulation.  She also participated in the drafting of the staff report, Implications of the Growth of Hedge Funds. More recently, Rochelle was a prime drafter of the Division’s guidance on robo-advisers. For her efforts, Rochelle was awarded the SEC Staff Excellence Award in June 2018.


Susan Grafton leads Dechert’s Broker-Dealer, Securities Trading and Markets practice and co-leads its FinTech practice. She is consistently ranked nationally by Chambers USA in the Broker-Dealer (Compliance) and Broker-Dealer (Enforcement) categories. Among other comments, clients note her “problem-solving orientation. I find her to be very practical and she can work with us on getting to a positive resolution. She always has her client's goals in mind.” (Chambers USA 2017). Market observers call her “an excellent regulatory attorney” and note that “Susan’s work as always been very impressive.” (Chambers USA 2018). They also note that she is “very well connected in the industry, and is able to get the SEC and FINRA to be more responsive” (Chambers USA 2016). Clients also describe her as “a go-to attorney…especially in Regulation M issues and distribution type questions, [where] she's very knowledgeable” (Chambers USA 2015).

Ms. Grafton counsels a wide range of broker-dealers, including alternative trading systems, on all aspects of their business, including registration and changes in control; sales practices, including proposed Regulation Best Interest; trading and execution issues, including compliance with best execution, trade and order reporting, and Regulation NMS and SHO requirements; and Regulation M and FINRA’s corporate finance rules. Her practice also includes representing investment avisers, including hedge fund managers, on a variety of issues, including broker-dealer status issues and solutions to avoiding broker-dealer registration, the use of expert networks, handling material non-public information, and compliance with Rule 105 of Regulation M. She advises buy-side and sell-side clients on soft dollar issues and intersection between Section 28(e) and MiFID II.

In addition, Ms. Grafton frequently represents clients before the SEC and FINRA in connection with regulatory examinations and enforcement investigations pertaining to a wide range of issues.

Ms. Grafton has a unique combination of regulatory, in-house and law firm experience. She began her career with the SEC’s Division of Trading and Markets, and subsequently served as a vice president and associate general counsel of Goldman Sachs & Co. where she advised on a variety of strategic, regulatory compliance and operational issues related to the firm’s institutional equities sales and trading businesses.


Dror Futter focuses his practice on startup and blockchain companies and their investors, and has worked with a wide range of technology companies. His fifteen years’ experience as in-house counsel included positions with Vidyo, Inc., a venture-backed videoconferencing company, and New Venture Partners, a venture fund focused on corporate spinouts. Prior to that, Mr. Futter was Counsel to the CIO of Lucent Technologies, as well as supporting parts of its sourcing organization.

Mr. Futter’s practice has three main focus areas:

Venture Finance/Corporate 
Mr. Futter has represented companies and venture funds in numerous equity and debt financing rounds, from early “friends and family” and Seed rounds to later-stage mezzanine financings, and has been on both sides of the table in these transactions. On the corporate side, he routinely handles corporate formations, employee equity plans and mergers and acquisitions. Mr. Futter has also been involved in over 40 corporate spinouts and understands the unique concerns of corporate venture investors.

Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies 
Mr. Futter advises clients with respect to legal developments in the rapidly developing blockchain and cryptocurrency spaces.   He has advised on ICO’s and has worked with consortia considering the issues involved in using permissioned blockchains to support supply chain record keeping.

Transactional IT & IP
Mr. Futter represents clients in a broad range of transactions, including: software licenses, SaaS Agreements, outsourcing agreements, development agreements, website terms and conditions, patent licenses, direct and indirect channel distribution agreements, services agreements, manufacturing agreements, and other supply chain agreements.

Mr. Futter serves on the Model Forms Drafting Group of the National Venture Capital Association, the legal advisory board of the Angel Capital Association and Legal Working Group of the Wall Street Blockchain Alliance. He is also a frequent speaker and writer on venture and blockchain related topics.  In addition, Mr. Futter is an Entrepreneur in Residence at the Stevens Venture Center of the Stevens Institute of Technology and a Mentor at Princeton University’s Keller Center.

Mr. Futter is a 1986 magna cum laude graduate of Princeton University and 1989 graduate of Columbia University School of Law. He also earned an Executive MBA in 1999 from the American Electronics Association Executive Institute of Stanford University.