The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. named Jessica Hopper executive vice president and head of enforcement on Friday.
She had been serving as acting chief of enforcement for Finra since September, when the previous head, Susan Schroeder, announced that she was leaving the broker self-regulator.
Ms. Hopper, 52, began working at Finra in 2004 as an enforcement attorney and then became a director in the Washington office. In 2011, she was promoted to vice president in charge of the regional enforcement program. In 2016, she was named senior vice president and deputy head of enforcement.
“She is highly regarded as an enforcement lawyer and a
thoughtful, collaborative leader, and during the course of her career has
demonstrated a deep commitment to protecting investors and the integrity of our markets,” Finra chief executive Robert W. Cook said in a statement.
Brad Bennett, who was Finra enforcement head from 2011 to 2017, credited Ms. Hopper as being an architect of an initiative that targeted brokerages that overcharged for mutual funds.
The effort began with an action against Merrill Lynch in 2014. Having identified a systemic problem, Finra then encouraged firms to self-report, offering to forego penalties as long as they made restitution to investors. Last summer, Finra reached settlements with 56 firms.
“She was very pragmatic in getting results for investors,” said
Mr. Bennett, managing partner of Vernon’s Gate Partners, a compliance and legal consulting firm.
Before she became a regulator, Ms. Hopper work for four
years at Legg Mason Wood Walker Inc. on legal and compliance matters and as a litigation attorney in private practice.
“Jessica understands the industry’s perspective and is
committed to investor protection,” Mr. Bennett said. “It should be a win-win for all of Finra’s constituents.”