Author(s): David M. Lynn, Carmen J. Lawrence, Keith F. Higgins Practice Area: Corporate & Securities, Litigation Published: Nov 2018 ISBN: 9781402432576 PLI Item #: 221274 CHB Spine #: B2446, B2447, B2448
David M. Lynn is a partner in the Washington D.C. Office of Morrison & Foerster, and is co-chair of the firm’s Corporate Finance practice. Mr. Lynn is a highly respected securities advisory counsel who provides guidance to Fortune 100 corporations, small public companies, underwriters and other market participants on corporate finance matters and best practices for disclosures and compliance. In addition to being a leading authority on SEC issues, Mr. Lynn is particularly well known in the area of executive compensation disclosure, having co-authored, “The Executive Compensation Disclosure Treatise and Reporting Guide.”
While serving as Chief Counsel of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Corporation Finance, Mr. Lynn led the rulemaking team that drafted revisions to the SEC's executive compensation and related party disclosure rules. Mr. Lynn re-joined the SEC as Chief Counsel shortly after adoption of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, and served in that position until 2007. As a result, he was intimately involved in implementing and interpreting the SEC rulemaking that occurred in the wake of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. Mr. Lynn initially served on the SEC staff from 1995-2000 as an Attorney-Advisor and subsequently a Special Counsel in the Division of Corporation Finance. While in private practice from 2000-2003, he advised clients on SEC investigations, securities transactions, mergers and acquisitions and corporate governance.
Mr. Lynn is co-editor of TheCorporateCounsel.net and The Corporate Counsel, which are widely read sources on securities, governance and corporate law matters. Mr. Lynn also serves as chair of the American Bar Association Business Law Section’s Federal Regulation of Securities Committee, co-chair of the Practising Law Institute’s Annual Institute on Securities Regulation and chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Securities and Exchange Commission Historical Society.
Carmen Lawrence is a partner in King & Spalding’s Special Matters and Government Investigations practice group.
Ms. Lawrence's practice focuses on representing parties in investigations and litigations conducted primarily by the US Securities and Exchange Commission, US Commodity Futures Trading Commission, US Department of Justice, self-regulatory organizations and state securities regulators, conducting internal investigations, providing crisis management advice to public and private companies and counseling public companies and regulated entities (broker-dealers and investment advisers) on their obligations under the federal securities laws.
From 1996 until June 2000, Ms. Lawrence was the Regional Director for the SEC's Northeast Regional Office (covering 14 states and the District of Columbia), where she oversaw all enforcement and regulatory operations in the SEC's largest region. Some of the SEC's most significant cases were brought by the Northeast Regional Office under Ms. Lawrence's leadership.
Before her appointment as regional director, from 1990 through 1995, Ms. Lawrence served as Senior Associate Regional Director, heading up the Northeast Regional Office's Enforcement Division. From 1981 to 1989, she served in various staff and senior positions in the Enforcement Division.
Ms. Lawrence received numerous awards during her tenure at the SEC, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Award in 1998; the Presidential Distinguished Executive Award in 1995; the Stanley Sporkin Award in 1993; and the Irving M. Pollack Award, presented to an enforcement lawyer exhibiting leadership, integrity and intellect, in 1990.
Ms. Lawrence is consistently recognized by Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business as a leading individual for Securities Regulation and for Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations. She is consistently recognized by Legal 500 in Litigation: White-Collar Criminal Defense, and is additionally recognized in Financial Services: Litigation. She is also consistently recognized by Benchmark: Litigation as a New York Litigation Star. She was named to Securities Docket’s inaugural “Enforcement 40” list of top SEC enforcement lawyers in 2013.
Ms. Lawrence has spoken extensively and participates in numerous continuing legal education programs for federal securities law matters.
Keith Higgins is a member of Ropes & Gray’s corporate department and chair of the securities & governance practice.
Keith rejoined the firm in 2017, after having served as Director of Corporation Finance at the U. S. Securities & Exchange Commission since 2013. While in that role, Keith led the Division’s implementation of significant rulemaking under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act (JOBS Act), and Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act). He also led the Division’s Disclosure Effectiveness project and oversaw the issuance of significant interpretive guidance to companies and investors under the federal securities laws.
Prior to serving at the SEC, Keith had practiced at Ropes & Gray for more than 30 years, counseling public companies in securities offerings, mergers and acquisitions, compliance and corporate governance. Keith advises companies, their boards, and investors on matters with the SEC, including disclosure and financial statements, no-action letters, as well as SEC enforcement actions and related internal investigations.
While in private practice, Keith was recognized by Chambers, Best Lawyers, and other publications as a leading corporate and M&A lawyer in Massachusetts and nationwide.