Anne K. Small, the General Counsel of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), said on Thursday that she plans to depart the regulator later this month, ending a four-year tenure with the commission.
Her move follows that of her boss, the SEC chairwoman Mary Jo White, who announced in December her plans to leave, as Wall Street overseers under the Obama administration wind down their tenures.
Ms. Small, a former litigation partner in the law firm of WilmerHale LLP, joined the commission in April 2013 as SEC’s Deputy General Counsel for Litigation and Adjudication and then assumed a leadership role as Special Assistant and Associate Counsel to the SEC Chair Mary Jo White. Upon her departure, the division will be led by her deputy, Sanket Bulsara, until a permanent replacement is found.
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As the agency’s chief legal officer, Ms. Small proved aggressive in pursuing cases instead of allowing companies to settle without admitting or denying wrongdoing. She has provided counsel on virtually all of the legal and policy issues before the Commission.
Commenting on her departure, SEC boss Mary Jo White said: “Annie is brilliant and has an extraordinary legal mind and tremendous judgement. She has always provided thoughtful and wise counsel on countless important and complex issues before the Commission. She is a true champion of the Commission who uses her keen intellect and judgement to guide the Commission to the right result. She has served me and the Commission superbly well, and I am very grateful that I have always been able to count on her, day or night, for her strategic thinking and knowledgeable advice and counsel.”
Ms. Small added: “It has been an incredible honor to serve alongside the talented and dedicated SEC staff. I owe Chair White my profound gratitude for giving me this opportunity and for all of her support. I particularly want to express my appreciation to my phenomenal colleagues in the Office of the General Counsel, whose expertise and professionalism have benefitted me and the Commission in all areas of our work.”