SEC Appoints Corporate Insider to Head Newly Established Whistleblower Office

On February 11, the SEC appointed Sean McKessy, former corporate secretary for AOL and Altria group (Phillip Morris) to head its new whistleblower program.  McKessy was previously an attorney in the SEC’s enforcement division.  Because of his corporate background, many worry that he will be an impediment to creating an effective SEC whistleblower program.  Indicative of this trend, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce already placed its imprimatur on the appointment in a statement that it was “encouraged” that McKessy “has a solid understanding of corporate compliance programs.”  So far the SEC has declined to make McKessy available for an interview.

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