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What Does the SEC’s Focus on ESG Mean for Investment Advisers?

December 14, 2021 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM (ET)

Learn about the many recent steps that the SEC has taken related to ESG and climate issues, and what impact they may have on investment advisers. Our expert panel includes Kelly L. Gibson, Director of the SEC’s Philadelphia Regional Office and leader of the Enforcement Division task force that is focused on ESG and climate issues, Amy J. Greer and Jennifer L. Klass, Co-Chairs of Baker McKenzie’s North American Financial Regulation and Enforcement Practice, and IAA Associate General Counsel Sarah Buescher. The panel will discuss the SEC’s initiatives and issues that advisers should consider. Topics to be addressed include potential areas for examination and enforcement, disclosures, advertising, compliance programs, and proxy voting.

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Webinar Speakers

Sarah Buescher is Associate General Counsel at the Investment Adviser Association. She is responsible for core Investment Advisers Act issues as well as ERISA and pension issues. Before joining the IAA, Sarah served as a Branch Chief in the Investment Adviser Regulation Office in the SEC’s Division of Investment Management. She also worked in the SEC’s Office of the General Counsel and started her legal career in the SEC’s Division of Investment Management. Sarah also has industry experience. Between 1999 and 2009, she worked at Vanguard, first in the Legal Department as Associate Counsel and Senior Counsel, and later as Manager of International Compliance in Vanguard’s Compliance Department. Sarah earned her B.S. in Communication Studies from Northwestern University in 1989, and her J.D. from the University of Notre Dame Law School in 1994. She is a member of the District of Columbia Bar.

Kelly L. Gibson is the Director of the SEC’s Philadelphia Regional Office and leader of the Enforcement Division’s Climate and ESG Task Force. She joined the SEC’s Division of Enforcement in the Philadelphia Regional Office in 2008. Kelly was promoted multiple times, and in 2020 she was named Director of the Philadelphia Regional Office. That office has jurisdiction over nearly 1,200 investment advisers and investment companies with over $10 trillion in assets under management, over 65 mutual fund complexes, and over 240 broker-dealers with over 14,500 branch offices. Before joining the SEC, Kelly worked as a litigation associate for Ballard Spahr LLP in Philadelphia.

Amy Greer serves as the Co-Chair of Baker McKenzie’s North American Financial Regulation and Enforcement Practice. Previously, Amy served as chief trial counsel at the SEC’s Philadelphia Regional Office and managed a team of lawyers overseeing a wide variety of enforcement matters. Amy advises all manner of financial industry clients and SEC reporting companies, in connection with regulatory enforcement investigations and examinations, as well as internal investigations. She provides practical and forward-looking guidance to clients, who seek her advice on matters as diverse as conflict of interest disclosures, sales practices concerns, insider trading/market abuse, financial and periodic reporting and accounting issues, securities offerings, investigations into complex products and trading, and whistleblower concerns. Amy also serves on the steering committees of the Firm’s Global Financial Services Regulatory and Global Financial Institutions Groups.

Jennifer L. Klass serves as the Co-Chair of Baker McKenzie’s North American Financial Regulation and Enforcement Practice. Jen is an experienced investment management lawyer with particular focus on investment adviser regulation and the convergence of investment advisory and brokerage services. She regularly represents clients before the SEC, both in seeking interpretative guidance and in managing examination and enforcement matters. Jen is a leading practitioner in digital investment advice and the use of FinTech in the asset management industry. She frequently assists clients in developing and offering innovative new products and services, including through separately managed account programs. Her practice also focuses on guiding clients through the interpretation and implementation of new rules and the consideration of emerging regulatory issues. Jen serves on the steering committee for the Firm’s Global Financial Services Regulatory Group.

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