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US SEC building in Washington, D.C., 2008 Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
US SEC building in Washington, D.C., 2008

SEC Associate Director of Enforcement Division Is Retiring

Antonia Chion spent 32 years with the SEC, and most recently helped supervise a settlement with Wells Fargo Clearing Services and Wells Fargo Advisors Financial Network that included a $35 million penalty.

Antonia Chion, an associate director at the SEC’s Division of Enforcement, announced her retirement today after 32 years at the government agency. The announcement comes a day after Wells Fargo settled with the SEC on charges that they had inadequately trained brokers on the selling of certain investment products, a case which she helped supervise.

In announcing the news, SEC Chairman Jay Clayton praised Chion’s expertise, experience and commitment, calling her work a model for other commission staff.

“Equally important to her leadership, Toni has been a teacher and mentor to many at the Commission,” Clayton said. “Her unwavering commitment to the SEC and to getting to the right result for investors will leave an enduring legacy.”

Chion, who received a law degree from Georgetown University’s Law Center, worked as a deputy bureau chief and supervisor in the narcotics bureau of the Kings County District Attorney's Office in Brooklyn before joining the SEC in 1988. She worked as a staff attorney in the Division of Enforcement for two years before she began supervising investigations. Chion has been an associate director with the division since 2002. She supervised many significant investigations, including actions against Charles Schwab Investment Management over issues tied to the 2008 financial crisis. Chion also helped run the Enforcement Division’s Broker-Dealer Task Force.

“I will always cherish my time at the SEC, where I worked with the best public servants dedicated to protecting investors and our markets,” Chion said. “My colleagues and the agency have my deep admiration and affection.”

On Thursday, Wells Fargo Advisors Financial Network and Wells Fargo Clearing Services agreed to pay a $35 million penalty to investors; the firms had been charged with failing to properly supervise investment advisors and registered representatives who were encouraging clients to consider investing in single-inverse exchange trading funds for long periods of time, even though it could lead to stark losses for investors. Chion helped supervise the investigation.

“Firms must maintain effective compliance and supervisory programs to ensure that the securities they recommend are suitable for their clients,” Chion said about the settlement.

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