ACA Group Enhances Compliance Team with New Hires: Former CCOs, Attorneys, and Regulators

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ACA Group

Publish Date

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Press Release

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  • Compliance

To best serve the unique and evolving needs of our clients, ACA is adding a number of outstanding professionals to our investment adviser compliance practice. In the past few months, we have made several notable additions to the team to help us to continue to operate at the forefront of the compliance industry. Some of our new hires include:  

Michael Esposito 

Michael Esposito joined ACA in June 2021 as a Senior Principal Consultant. Mike has over 15 years of experience as a compliance professional building and maintaining compliance programs, managing compliance teams, and navigating regulatory affairs.  

Prior to ACA, he served as vice president of compliance for the investment adviser OFS Capital Management, LLC and the venture capital firm OCV Management, LLC. Prior to joining OFS and OCV, Mike held various compliance roles at UBS O’Connor LLC that included deputy chief compliance officer and interim chief compliance officer. His activities and responsibilities included creating, maintaining, testing, and disseminating all regulatory policies and procedures supporting O’Connor’s compliance program. He also participated substantially in regulatory inquiries and examinations.  

Mike has also been a staff accountant and securities compliance examiner with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. His duties included conducting regulatory examinations of investment advisers, investment companies, private funds, and other entities regarding their compliance with the Advisers Act and the Investment Company Act.  

Joe Frost 

Joe Frost joined ACA in February 2021 as a Principal Consultant. Prior to ACA, Joe worked as a senior associate with the consulting firm Greyline Partners, LLC. There he assisted a variety of registered investment advisers, including hedge funds, private equity funds, venture capital funds, funds of funds, and traditional wealth managers, in developing and conducting ongoing compliance program maintenance. He also led annual reviews and mock regulatory examinations in addition to providing regulatory examination support, preparation, and remediation. His other responsibilities included creating regulatory releases for Greyline clients and contacts as well as overseeing the recruitment, training, and work allocations of junior staff members. 

Prior to Greyline, Joe was an analyst with Duff & Phelps, LLC in their compliance and regulatory consulting group. In that role, he helped develop compliance programs, completed requisite filings for clients, and worked with senior team members on reviews and examinations. 

Steve Hengst 

Steve Hengst joined ACA in January 2021 as a Principal Consultant. Steve brings with him 21 years of compliance experience, 15 as a chief compliance officer with a registered investment adviser and more than 6 as a compliance examiner at the SEC. In addition to his expertise in investment adviser compliance, he is familiar with the regulations governing broker-dealers, private funds, and investment companies. 

Prior to ACA, Steve served as chief compliance officer for Kovitz Investment Group Partners, LLC (KIG). While most of KIG’s clients are individuals, the firm also manages benefit plans, private funds, and mutual funds. As CCO, Steve maintained all elements of the firm’s regulatory compliance program. He also served as CCO for a broker-dealer affiliated with KIG. Before Kovitz, Steve conducted compliance examinations of investment advisers and investment companies as a securities compliance examiner in the Chicago office of the SEC’s Division of Examinations.  

Christi James 

Christi James joined ACA in June 2021 as a Principal Consultant. Christi brings more than 15 years of experience as a regulatory compliance officer and corporate leader. She has extensive knowledge of the Investment Company Act of 1940 and FINRA regulations for mutual funds, exchange-traded funds, and private funds.

Prior to ACA, Christi served as lead compliance manager in global communications compliance, at T. Rowe Price. There, she acted as a subject matter expert for marketing requirements and regulatory requirements for ETFs, as well as lead compliance manager for new product launches, including separately managed accounts, model portfolios, and collective investment trusts. She also advised the sales and marketing departments regarding marketing campaigns and reviewed and filed marketing materials with FINRA. Previously, Christi has served as a compliance and legal manager with the CR Group, and as a regional compliance manager with JP Morgan Chase.  

Bobby McNitt 

Bobby McNitt joined ACA in June 2021 as a Principal Consultant. Prior to ACA, Bobby worked for the Compliance and Regulatory Consulting group at Duff & Phelps where he developed and implemented compliance programs for investment advisers, including (amongst other things) completing registrations as an SEC registered investment adviser, drafting tailored compliance policies and procedures, conducting initial and annual compliance trainings, conducting annual compliance program reviews, completing regulatory filings such as Form ADV, Form CRS, and Form PF, and reviewing fund and adviser marketing materials. 

Bradley Modic 

Bradley Modic joined ACA in April 2021 as a Director. Prior to ACA, Bradley served as senior manager of Fund Compliance with ProShares. There he administered the compliance programs of the firm’s 200+ ETFs and mutual funds. He also performed all compliance program audits and testing and conducted due diligence of fund service providers. In addition, Bradley oversaw the daily operation of the firm’s portfolio compliance, liquidity risk management, and code of ethics functions. He also served as secretary for various committees and maintained the library of fund and advisor policies and procedures. 

Bradley has also been a vice president and senior compliance officer with Legg Mason’s Global Compliance Examinations group and a senior associate in T. Rowe Price’s Legal Investment Compliance and Global Equities divisions. For Legg Mason, he conducted regulatory and compliance reviews of the firm’s global advisory affiliates, performed risk assessments, and conducted on-site interviews and inspections and issued recommendations. For T. Rowe Price, he monitored compliance with investment guidelines and restrictions across all portfolios and calculated the daily net asset values for the firm’s equity mutual funds. 

Avery Salisbury 

Avery A.K.L. Salisbury will join ACA in July 2021 as a Senior Principal Consultant. Avery began her compliance career in ACA’s analyst program and we are thrilled to be welcoming her back to the team. Prior to re-joining ACA, Avery served as deputy chief compliance officer for the hedge fund ExodusPoint Capital Management, LP. In that position, she led the US regulatory compliance department, managed internal working groups, and liaised with local chief compliance officers. As a member of the compliance and conflicts committee, she worked to mitigate risk, assess potential conflicts of interest, improve operating efficiencies, and align core elements of the global compliance program framework via technology platforms, data analytics, and key compliance metrics. Among other responsibilities, Avery helped manage regulatory examinations and inquiries, oversaw the annual compliance review, testing and monitoring of the code of ethics program, reviewed and analyzed the firm’s governance and risk controls, and collaborated with the relevant control functions on regulatory filings and disclosures. 

Avery has also been a managing director and chief compliance officer with Gresham Investment Management LLC and a senior compliance associate with Eton Park Capital Management, LP. In both positions, she oversaw or participated in key regulatory compliance activities. These included drafting annual compliance program reports, updating and distributing compliance manuals and code of ethics policies, and monitoring developments in regulatory law to make sure the firms were in compliance with emerging regulatory responsibilities and industry best practices. 

Melinda Toh 

Melinda Toh joined ACA in June 2021 as a Consultant, bringing more than 15 years of investment and regulatory compliance experience. Prior to ACA, Melinda held the position of vice president of compliance for BlackRock, Inc. / Tennenbaum Capital Partners, LLC where she administered the compliance program and oversaw the management of expert networks and political intelligence platforms.  

Before BlackRock, Melinda was a compliance analyst for Nuveen Investments, Inc where she performed forensic monitoring and testing reviews to confirm compliance with policies and procedures for three Los Angeles based affiliates. At Nuveen Melinda worked closely with business units to support the identification and mitigation of operational and regulatory risks. She also acted as senior compliance officer with Post Advisory Group, LLC where she performed forensic testing of policies and procedures to confirm compliance with policies and procedures. Prior to Post Advisory Group, Melinda held various compliance focused roles at Pacific Investment Management Company, LLC, Metropolitan West Asset Management, LLC, and The Capital Group Companies, Inc. 

About ACA Group 

ACA Group (ACA) is the leading governance, risk, and compliance (GRC) advisor in financial services. We empower our clients to reimagine GRC and protect and grow their business. Our innovative approach integrates consulting, managed services, and our ComplianceAlpha® technology platform with the specialized expertise of former regulators and practitioners and our deep understanding of the global regulatory landscape. 

Our global team of regulatory compliance professionals includes former SEC, FINRA, FCA, CFTC, NFA, and state regulators, as well as former senior managers from prominent financial institutions and advisory firms. We work with compliance and legal professionals to review and develop compliance programs based on best practices, current regulatory requirements, and robust oversight processes. 

Learn more about our compliance consulting services or contact our team here to learn more.