The SEC announced today that Enforcement Director Andrew J. Ceresney will leave the agency by the end of this month. Ceresney has served as Enforcement Director (or Co-Director) since joining the SEC in April 2013. Deputy Director Stephanie Avakian will serve as Acting Director upon Ceresney’s departure.
SEC Chair Mary Jo White named Ceresney Co-Director (along with George Canellos) upon his arrival at the agency in 2013. Upon Canellos' departure from the SEC in January 2014, Ceresney continued to serve as Director. Reflecting upon Ceresney's tenure, Chair White today credited Ceresney for his strong leadership that helped take an "already robust enforcement program to an even higher level, achieving unprecedented results, including a record number of enforcement actions, first-of-their-kind cases and a first ever admissions policy for a civil law enforcement agency.” White specifically cited Ceresney's tremendous work ethic, his commitment to do what is right, and his deep dedication to the agency, adding that "America’s investors and our markets have been extremely fortunate to have him fighting in their corner for the last four years."
In a statement, Ceresney called his years at the SEC "the highlight of my career" and said he was "immensely proud" of what the SEC accomplished on behalf of investors. The SEC stated that during Ceresney's tenure as Director, the agency:
filed more than 2,850 enforcement actions;
obtained judgments and orders totaling more than $13.8 billion in monetary sanctions;
charged over 3,300 companies and over 2,700 individuals, including many CEOs, CFOs, and other senior corporate officers;
created the Center for Risk and Quantitative Analytics, which has provided data analytic expertise for over 100 cases against more than 200 entities and individuals;
created the Market Abuse Unit’s Analysis and Detection Center, which has developed new analytical tools to help identify and investigate potential insider trading;
greatly developed its whistleblower program, which has now awarded over $130 million to whistleblowers; and
enhanced its trial capacity, and has not lost a jury trial in federal district court in over two and a half years.