WASHINGTON — Malcolm P. Northam, director of fixed income securities at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, is planning to retire from the self-regulatory agency at the end of the year, a FINRA spokesperson confirmed Thursday.

“I’m looking forward to remaining engaged and an active contributor and participant in bond market compliance and risk management,” Northam said, when asked about his future.

Northam, who will turn 66 in December, has been at FINRA or its predecessor, NASD, for 15 years.

He was the first director of fixed-income regulation at NASD. Mary Schapiro, now Securities and Exchange Commission chairman, had promised to hire a municipal securities compliance expert when she was president of NASD’s regulatory arm. Northam has played a key role in NASD and FINRA municipal bond and other fixed income compliance, examination, risk management, professional qualification programs.

Before joining FINRA, Northam founded and managed a nationwide compliance consulting practice, which designed and coordinated internal controls for risk management, compliance and other programs. Prior to that, he was with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency as deputy director of its investment services division and as a banking and securities examiner.

“The municipal securities community will miss Mac’s expertise,” said SEC Commissioner Elisse Walter.

“Mac has contributed enormously to the effective oversight of the municipal securities market and played a key role in the strong relationship between the MSRB and FINRA,” said MSRB Executive Director Lynnette Kelly.  “His knowledge and professionalism over the years have helped both organizations fulfill their mission to protect municipal market participants.”

“Mac Northam has been an expert in fixed-income enforcement at FINRA and has always been accessible to consider questions or concerns about the municipal securities market,” said Leslie Norwood, a managing director, associate general counsel, and co-head of municipal securities at the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association. “He has been an asset to FINRA for many years, and we wish him the best in his future endeavors.”

“During Mac’s tenure at the NASD and now FINRA he was always been easily accessible and quick to respond to inquiries from the BDA and the BDA’s membership,” said Mike Nicholas, CEO of Bond Dealers of America. “Tough and a straight shooter, Mac understands and appreciates the challenges faced by middle market and regional fixed income dealers .... We will miss Mac’s leadership at FINRA and wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”

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