Stephen A. Kohn For 2017 FINRA Small Firm Governor

May 30, 2017

As set forth in "Upcoming FINRA Board of Governors Election / Petitions for Candidacy Due: July 7, 2017" (FINRA Election Notice / May 23, 2017):

Petition Process for Additional Candidates

Pursuant to Article VII, Section 10 of FINRA's By-Laws, a person who has not been nominated for election to the FINRA Board by the Nominating Committee may be included on the ballot for the election of governors if:

a. within 45 days after the date of this Election Notice, such person presents to the Secretary of FINRA petitions in support of such nomination, duly executed by at least three percent of FINRA member firms entitled to vote for such nominee's election. If, however, a candidate's name appears on a petition in support of more than one nominee, the petition must be endorsed by 10 percent of FINRA member firms entitled to vote for such nominees' election; and

b. the Secretary certifies that such petitions have been duly executed by the executive representatives of the requisite number of FINRA member firms entitled to vote for such person's election, and the person being nominated satisfies the classification of the governorship to be filled based on the information provided by the person as is reasonably necessary for the Secretary to make the certification.

As of close of business on Monday, May 22, 2017, the number of FINRA small firms was 3,455, and the number of large firms was 180.

Firms may only endorse one petitioner for the same firm size seat as their own. No firm may endorse more than one such nominee.

Petitioners must submit sufficient information to determine the person's status with respect to the category for which he or she is petitioning to be nominated. Petitioners must also provide information sufficient for the corporate secretary to determine that the petitions are duly executed by the executive representatives of the requisite number of applicable size firm members. In addition, to assist in the process of verifying petitions, FINRA requests that all petitions submitted be dated by their signatory. Petitions must be submitted no later than Friday, July 7, 2017.

The names of persons obtaining the requisite number of valid petitions will be included on the appropriate proxy mailed to eligible firms in advance of the annual meeting.

. . .

Voting Eligibility

Firms are eligible to vote for the nominees who are running for seats that are in the same size category as their own firm. Therefore, small firms and large firms may vote only for the candidates running for the seats reserved for their firm size. FINRA will verify the size of each firm on the day the proxies are mailed. Each firm eligible to vote will receive a proxy containing the nominees for their voting class.

A personal note from Bill Singer, Blog:

Stephen A. Kohn is running as a candidate for the 2017 Financial Industry Regulatory Authority ("FINRA") Small Firm Governor seat on the self-regulatory organization's Board. Stephen has demonstrated a persistent and consistent record as an unabashed advocate for industry reform and effective regulation. He is not running for office in order to burnish his resume. Without question, Stephen seeks a Board seat in order to shake things up, to force consideration of reforms that are long overdue, and to make sure that someone fights for the legitimate needs of FINRA's besieged small firms.  

I support Stephen's candidacy for the 2017 FINRA Small Firm Governor and urge all Blog readers to press their FINRA member firm's Executive Representative to support Stephen's candidacy for the Board.

READ Stephen's Online Biography

Stephen A. Kohn & Associates, Ltd.

3232 South Vance Street, Suite 210
Lakewood, Colorado 80227

I have been employed in the financial services industry since 1984, to which I have devoted most of my working life.  Founded in 1996, I own and operate a FINRA, member firm, Stephen A, Kohn & Associates, Ltd. ("SAKL") located in Lakewood, Colorado.  SAKL is a small, full service, independent broker/dealer, catering to the needs of 28 independent representatives and their clients, with office locations in seven states, registered in thirty-five.

I have been twice elected to the National Adjudicatory Council ("NAC") by FINRA's small firms, first in 2009 and again in 2014.  I currently serve on the NAC, as one of your two small firm members. The NAC is FINRA's appellate division, hearing appeals to enforcement decisions and other issues.

I have been appointed to, and serve, on the NAC's Sanction Guideline Review Sub-Committee.  This sub-committee has been convened to review and revise the guidelines, ensure that sanctions in appeals that are upheld by the NAC are fair and appropriate and to recommend revisions to the Sanction Guidelines as needed.  I am also an Industry Arbitrator.

I hold the following securities licenses: Series, 7, 24, 53, 63, 72, 73, 79 and 99.  I graduated from C.W. Post College of Long Island University in 1964 with a BA degree and have also served in the U.S. Coast Guard.

I have been, and will continue to be, your outspoken voice, fighting for serious recognition as a more than viable asset to the investing public.

In an environment of rapidly changing technology, the small Broker/Dealer provides a real, live voice on the other end of the line, to the investing public.  We service the investors with whom the "big guys" consider a bother and waste of time.  Yet, we're not taken as a serious force in the industry even though we are over 90% of FINRA's membership.

Things will not change overnight or, perhaps, ever.  But the only promise I can make to you is that, on your behalf, our voices will be heard and, hopefully, make a difference in the misguided perception that we are orphans, waiting to be adopted, or give up and go away.

The need for regulation is necessary now, more than ever.  But, it must be meted out with an even hand.  We cannot be held to the same standard as those "too big to fail" institutions.  We must be judged relative to who we are and the services we provide.

The "Regulators" will never know who we really are until they've walked a mile in our shoes and judge us accordingly.

Your vote will bring me to where I can deliver our message to those who control our destiny.