Craft in the City

Helane Morrison Broke Through the Financial World’s Glass Ceiling

The financial world has never been known as a culture friendly to women. Although a lot more stock brokers now are women than ever before, most of the traders and dealmakers are still male. 

The financial world has also never been hospitable to regulators.

Yet Helane Morrison has managed to succeed as a woman and as a regulator determined to keep the industry honest. She now serves as Managing Director and Chief Compliance Officer of Hall Capital. Hall is the largest investment advisor in San Francisco. It invests money for some of the wealthiest families in the country. It has over $24 billion in assets under management. It is also the only investment firm in the country that’s run exclusively by women. Therefore, Morrison has found a way to continue to put her expertise in ethical investing protecting investors from financial services predators in 3-piece suits, while still working for gender equality in the workplace.

Morrison earned her Bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Northwestern University in Illinois.

She served as a law clerk 7th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, then served as clerk to Supreme Court Justice Harry A. Blackmun, famous as a champion of women’s rights. For 10 years, Morrison worked in private practice in area related to business and securities. As full partner, she headed a team of 100 employees who investigated corrupt traders. 

This accomplishment brought her to the attention of the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC), the government agency responsible for regulating the finance industry. She accepted their job offer as head of enforcement in their San Francisco office. For the next 11 years, Morrison made a name of herself as a tough crusader defending investors against the corrupt and powerful. 

She went after top executives at Hewlett Packard, Google, Ernst and Young, HBO, NextCard and others. She exposed the insurance company American Amicable’s deceptive sales of securities to U.S. military personnel.  During her time at the SEC that agency promoted her to the Head of Commission and Regional Director, the first woman in history to achieve that title in the SEC. Her territory covered Nothern California (including Silicon Valley, so her position was very high profile) and five other states in the northwest.

Later, she accepted an offer from Hall Capital as Chief Compliance Office to make sure they adhere to industry ethics and law.

Connect with Helane on LinkedIn or check out her Crunchbase profile here: https://www.crunchbase.com/person/helane-morrison#/entity

One thought on “Helane Morrison Broke Through the Financial World’s Glass Ceiling

  1. She worked to end insider trading and market manipulation. She opted to go to the University of California Berkeley School of Law. It was not easy for bestessay to make it happen for them and this will happen for them.

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