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Roisman not likely to take a seat at the SEC soon

WASHINGTON – Elad Roisman, the Senate Banking Committee’s chief counsel, whose main expertise is in equities and corporate debt, has been nominated by President Trump to replace Securities and Exchange Commission member Michael Piwowar after he leaves as commissioner this summer.

But don’t expect to see him at the SEC very soon. The Senate Banking Committee may wait to start the confirmation process for Roisman, who does not appear to have much experience in municipal securities, until Trump nominates a Democrat to replace Kara Stein when she leaves before the end of the year. The Senate Banking Committee must recommend him to the full Senate, which in turn must confirm him for the SEC post.

Typically, the Senate goes through the confirmation process for Republicans and Democrats nominated to the SEC at about the same time so that commissioners from the majority party do not have so much control that the SEC becomes partisan and so that nominees for commissioners from the minority party are considered in a timely manner.

“In the past, it’s proved convenient to pair a Democrat with a Republican in order to expedite the Senate Banking Committee hearing process,” said Paul Maco, a partner at the Bracewell law firm here and the first director of the SEC’s Office of Municipal Securities.

SEC Chairman Jay Clayton and Commissioners Piwowar and Hester Pierce are Republicans. Piwowar’s five-year term does not expire until June 5 of this year and he can serve about 18 months longer until the end of the term of the congressional session. But Piwowar told the president in a May 7 letter that he plans to resign his SEC post on July 7 or sooner if a successor is sworn in.

Robert Jackson Jr. and Kara Stein are Democrats. But Stein’s term expired on June 5 of last year, so she must leave the SEC in December or January, whenever the term of the current congressional session ends.

Roisman has been chief counsel on the banking committee since January 2017. Before that he was senior counsel for securities for the committee for two years and seven months, starting in June 2014.

Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, issued a statement praising Trump’s nomination of Roisman.

“Elad is exceptionally well-qualified for this important position at the SEC, and I congratulate him,” Crapo said.

“Having worked on securities issues for many years – in both the public and private sectors – he has demonstrated his in-depth knowledge of our capital markets and other complex issues. His wealth of experience and expertise will be an invaluable asset to the SEC, and I am confident that as a commissioner, he will work to fulfill the agency’s mission.”

From December 2012 to June 2014, Roisman served at the SEC as counsel to then-Commissioner Daniel Gallagher, during which time Gallagher told The Bond Buyer that he had a “blood oath” with former acting SEC Chairman Elisse Walter to keep the focus on municipal securities reform and the recommendations made in the SEC’s 2012 Report on the Municipal Securities Market. Roisman sat in on an interview Gallagher did with The Bond Buyer.

Gallagher is currently chief legal officer for Mylan, a global pharmaceutical company, and couldn’t be reached for comment.

For the two years and four months before that Roisman was chief counsel at the NYSE Euronext, a Euro-American multinational financial services corporations that operated multiple securities exchanges, including the New York Stock Exchange.

From October 2006 to July 2010 he was an associate at the law firm of Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP, where he specialized in corporates as well as mergers and acquisitions.

Roisman’s LinkedIn site lists his specialties as: general corporate law, market structure, corporate governance, M&A, securities, derivatives, and contracts.

He has a law degree from Boston University School of Law and a bachelor's degree from Cornell University.

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