The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that Gerald W. Hodgkins, an Associate Director of the Division of Enforcement, will leave the agency at the end of this year for private practice.
During his tenure of two decades at the SEC, Mr. Hodgkins has overseen more than 100 enforcement actions covering the full breadth of the agency's jurisdiction, including issuer reporting and disclosure fraud, violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, and misconduct by entities regulated by the agency. Since being appointed as Associate Director in 2010, Mr. Hodgkins also has served as a founding member of the SEC's Claims Review Staff, which makes recommendations to the Commission concerning when and how much to award whistleblowers under the SEC's whistleblower program. He also has served as a member of the SEC's National Labor Management Forum.
"Jerry embodies what it means to be a dedicated public servant," said Stephanie Avakian, Co-Director of the SEC's Enforcement Division. "He will be missed terribly by all of us in the Enforcement Division, but most especially by the scores of lawyers he has mentored and supervised over the years."
"Jerry has been an insightful and innovative leader of the SEC's enforcement program, and his contributions will have lasting impact," said Steven Peikin, Co-Director of the SEC's Enforcement Division.
Mr. Hodgkins said, "I am grateful for the opportunity to have served U.S. investors for much of my professional career. It was a pleasure and privilege to work alongside the dedicated and talented staff at the SEC, whose commitment to public interest has never wavered."
Under Mr. Hodgkins' leadership, the SEC has brought enforcement actions addressing a wide variety of misconduct, including charges against:
- WorldCom, Inc., which agreed in 2003 to pay a $750 million civil penalty – the largest penalty in SEC history for issuer reporting and disclosure fraud – as well as against WorldCom's former CEO, Bernard J. Ebbers, CFO, Scott D. Sullivan, and controller David F. Myers;
- MRI International and Edwin Fujinaga, for conducting a massive Ponzi scheme targeting Japanese citizens and against whom the SEC obtained over $580 million in monetary remedies on summary judgment in a civil action filed in 2013;
- William W. McGuire, M.D., the former CEO and Chairman of UnitedHealth Group Inc., who agreed in 2007 to pay $468 million in what was the first and still largest settlement involving Section 304 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002; and
- Daimler AG, which agreed in 2010 to pay more than $185 million to resolve parallel SEC and U.S. Department of Justice investigations related to its violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
Mr. Hodgkins also spearheaded a settlement in 2008 with a large financial institution that provided 5,500 individual investors, small businesses, and small charities the opportunity to sell back up to $4.7 billion in auction rate securities (ARS) they purchased before the ARS market collapsed in February 2008.
Mr. Hodgkins, 52, joined the SEC in 1997. He became a Branch Chief in 1999, an Assistant Director in 2007, and an Associate Director in 2010. Before joining the SEC, he served as a law clerk to the late Honorable Charles R. Richey of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. He also was a litigation associate in private practice in Washington, D.C. He graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law and received his undergraduate degree from Tufts University.