As part of its CFI Professional Insights Series, Capital Forensics Inc. features the career of Susan Light, who has gone from being a prosecutor in the Bronx District Attorney's office, to regulatory roles at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), to Katten. Looking back at her time as a regulator, Sue noted that she and her colleagues really believed in the mission of investor protection and market integrity, which made the work inherently interesting. "Over the course of my career at the [NYSE] and FINRA, I was exposed to a broad range of experiences, from the JOBS Act and funding portals, cybersecurity, cryptocurrency, market trading abuses, complex products, and insider trading to money laundering. You name it, I did it."
On deciding to go into private practice, she stated, "I loved my career. If I had to do it all over again, I would do it exactly the same. After 7 years as a prosecutor, and 30 years as a regulator, I felt I had made a difference and it was everything that I wanted out of a career. But I had the desire to branch out and do something different. I interviewed at several law firms, but chose Katten, which is a great firm where the culture is very collaborative. Katten represents a vast number of brokerage firms and my regulatory experience is key to assisting these clients. At Katten, in addition to investigations, I advise broker-dealers and other clients on a broad range of matters, including anti-money-laundering, fraud, market manipulation, supervision, unauthorized trading, insider trading, rogue employees, cybersecurity and cryptocurrencies."
Sue shared her commitment to counseling firms on Regulation Best Interest (Reg BI). "From my point of view, broker-dealers care deeply about doing right by their clients, and they are doing the best they can to recommend the best investments and get the best order flow for their customers. Reg BI is front and center in their thinking."
To young women interested in pursuing a legal or other professional career, Sue recommended, "Whatever profession you're interested in, whether it's law, music, entertainment, fashion, real estate, criminal justice, finance, or cryptocurrency, just go for it! If you choose a legal career, it will involve a lot of work and long hours, but you will be surrounded and supported by others who are just as passionate as you are. Exercise your good judgment, intelligence, creativity and integrity, and you can do whatever you set out to accomplish."
"Professional Insights: Interview with Susan Light," Capital Financial, Inc., August 3, 2022