CW’s Excellence in Compliance Awards recognize the best and brightest in compliance.

The 2024 “Excellence in Compliance Awards” recognized the following:

  • Chief Compliance Officer or Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer of the Year
  • Compliance Program of the Year (Company)
  • Lifetime Achievement in Compliance
  • Compliance Innovator of the Year
  • Rising Star in Compliance
  • Compliance Mentor of the Year

Winners and finalists for this year’s awards are listed below. For Lifetime Achievement no finalists were selected—only a winner. The honor went to Felecia Bowers, executive vice president, chief compliance officer at Homeowners Financial Group USA.

About each award

The CCO/CECO of the Year will be awarded to the practitioner who has best demonstrated the values of leadership, effectiveness, collaboration, communication, constructiveness, and vision at his or her organization. Special attention will be paid to CCOs/CECOs that have met the unique challenges posed by recent regulatory developments in areas including ESG, AML, data privacy, cybersecurity, sanctions, supply chains, and more.

For Compliance Program of the Year , we’re looking for best-in-class programs that can show measurable successes, demonstrate cultural impact across the company, and tell a story that ethics and compliance are truly baked into the decision-making process for the organization.

The winner of the Lifetime Achievement award will be a longtime compliance practitioner, educator, or commentator who has upheld the core principles of ethics and leadership throughout his or her career.

The Innovator of the Year recognition will go to an in-house practitioner who has taken an outside-the-box approach to solving a complex problem or made the most out of available resources.

Rising Star in Compliance will go to an up-and-comer in the business who has shown the skills and ethics-first leadership needed to be a next-generation CCO. Finalists for our Mentor of the Year honor will be people who have provided needed guidance and leadership to peers or subordinates for the betterment of a particular organization’s compliance program or the profession at large.

2023 Excellence in Compliance Awards winners

CCO/CECO of the Year: Bill Burtis, Chief Compliance Officer, Vice President and Deputy General Counsel, Juniper Networks

Compliance Program of the Year: American Express Global Business Travel

Lifetime Achievement in Compliance: Haluk Ferden Gursel, United Nations

Compliance Innovator of the Year: Bianca Forde, Senior Director and Counsel, Head of Ethics and Compliance - Americas, Otis Elevator Company

Rising Star in Compliance: Anastasia Savvateeva, Deputy Head of Financial Crime Compliance, Continental Europe, Fidelity International Luxembourg

Compliance Mentor of the Year: Rachel Simon, Vice President - Privacy, AT&T

2022 Excellence in Compliance Awards winners

CCO/CECO of the Year: Kelly Maxwell, Chief Compliance Officer, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Compliance Program of the Year: Snap

Lifetime Achievement in Compliance: Tamar Frankel, Professor of Law Emerita, Boston University

Rising Star in Compliance: Boon Kim Fam, Legal Director of Compliance, Asia Pacific, PVH

Compliance Mentor of the Year: Mary Shirley, Head of Culture of Integrity and Compliance Education, Fresenius Medical Care

2021 Excellence in Compliance Awards winners

CCO/CECO of the Year: Justin Ross, Chief Compliance Officer, FedEx Corp.

Compliance Program of the Year: Tenneco

Lifetime Achievement in Compliance: Emmanuel Lulin, Chief Ethics Officer, L’Oréal

Compliance Innovator of the Year: Sarah Partington, Senior Compliance Officer/Director of Compliance Operations, The MetroHealth System

Compliance Mentor of the Year: Ellen Hunt, Vice President, Compliance Operations & Chief Privacy Officer, LifePoint Health

Rising Star in Compliance: Jennifer Newton, Founder and CEO, National Association of Black Compliance & Risk Management Professionals

Compliance Consultant/Advisor of the Year (Individual or Company): VANTAGE, from Control Risks

2020 Excellence in Compliance Awards winners

CCO of the Year: Duane Holloway, Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Chief Ethics & Compliance Officer, U.S. Steel

Lifetime Achievement in Compliance: Carrie Penman, Chief Risk and Compliance Officer, NAVEX Global

Compliance Comeback of the Year: Joshua Drew, Group Chief Ethics & Compliance Officer, VEON

Compliance Innovator of the Year: Alicia Schwarz, Deputy Chief Compliance Counsel (Global), Walt Disney Company

Compliance Mentor of the Year: Jay G. Martin, Senior Counsel, Willkie Farr & Gallagher

Rising Star in Compliance: Vera Powell, Senior Corporate Counsel, Delta Air Lines

Excellence in Compliance—Anti-Corruption: Alan Gibson, Assistant General Counsel, Compliance & Ethics, Microsoft

Excellence in Compliance—TPRM: Robert Seibel, Director of Legal Compliance, Abercrombie & Fitch

Excellence in Compliance—Cyber-security: David Kessler, Public Sector Counsel, Verizon

Excellence in Compliance—Data Privacy: Kalisa Barratt, Chief Compliance and Privacy Officer, Atrius Health

Excellence in Compliance—Training: Cindy Merlino, Global Compliance & Ethics Specialist, Pearson

Best Consultant/Advisor—Large Company: Duff & Phelps

Best Consultant/Advisor—Small Company: Bart Schwartz, Chairman, Guidepost Solutions

Best Technology Partner—Large Company: Refinitiv

Best Technology Partner—Small Company: LogicGate

The fine print

Nominations must include the following information: Nominee’s name, nominee’s company, specific award the individual/company is nominated for, 500 words or less on why the person/company should win the award, and the nominator’s information.

Extra consideration will be paid to nominations that highlight accomplishments by the nominee in the past year. There is no cost associated with submitting a nomination.

Questions regarding the “Excellence in Compliance Awards” can be directed to

What about Top Minds?

From 2016-2019, Compliance Week highlighted the best and brightest in the governance, risk, ethics, and compliance profession with the Top Minds award. Recipients participated in in-depth interviews and were recognized in a short ceremony at our National Conference in Washington, D.C.

The Excellence in Compliance Awards have replaced our Top Minds awards going forward, though we are still proud to recognize the 47 Top Minds winners.