New York University’s Program on Corporate Compliance and Enforcement recently published my essay on the state of the legal and compliance function at private fund firms.

The essay begins with a review of some key moments over the past two decades that impacted the role of legal and compliance, then discusses potential reasons for the roles’ declining priority. Next, the essay considers how the SEC might be refocusing its efforts to oversee the private fund industry. It concludes with some observations on what the future could hold and provides a set of questions that private fund firms can use to assess how they prioritize the legal and compliance function.

Readers of this Founder Corner blog may recognize parts of the essay as an adaptation from a series of short pieces that appeared here (and on LinkedIn) this past summer. As discussed in this blog and on my Operational Leaders podcast, legal and compliance is one of several functions (though a very important one) that leaders of successful firms must understand and effectively address as part of the “business of running an asset management business.”

Here is a direct link to the essay on the PCCE site.


The NYU Program on Corporate Compliance and Enforcement is the leading law and research program dedicated to developing a richer and deeper understanding of the causes of corporate misconduct and the nature of effective enforcement and compliance. PCCE sponsors a number of events throughout the year that address the most pressing compliance and enforcement issues of the day, as well as a blog that hosts contributions from leading practitioners and academics in the corporate field.

The program is led by Faculty Director Jennifer Arlen ’86 and Executive Director Alicyn Cooley. To learn more about the NYU PCCE, its blog and some of the outstanding events it sponsors, please visit the program’s website.

~ Terrance O’Malley