10/27/2015 1:13:00 PM
SAINT PAUL – Minnesota Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman was recently selected as the new president-elect of the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), the oldest international organization devoted to investor protection and efficient capital formation. He will become the organization’s president at NASAA’s annual conference in September 2016.
Since January 2011, Rothman has led the Minnesota Department of Commerce, which protects consumers and investors by enforcing the state’s securities laws.
“I am honored to be selected for this leadership position by my peers among state securities regulators,” said Rothman. “The state securities regulator has an essential role to protect Main Street investors from fraud and unsuitable investments and to support small business opportunities. This responsibility is all the more important as the world of finance continues to grow ever more complex and challenging for investors.”
Among its responsibilities, the Minnesota Commerce Department is the state securities regulatory agency. The department registers securities firms and investment professionals; registers certain securities offerings; reviews financial offerings of small companies; audits sales practices; requires proper disclosures, transparency and record-keeping; promotes investor education; and investigates financial fraud.
In addition to protecting investors, the Commerce Department supports small business investment opportunities while aiding in compliance with securities laws.
As Commerce Commissioner, Rothman has stepped up the agency’s investigations of investment fraud and financial scams, especially against seniors. He has also strengthened the agency’s work overseeing securities and investment activities in the state, including new investment adviser registration and examination programs.
Rothman noted that NASAA’s 2015 Enforcement Report shows that senior investors continue to be a prime target for fraudulent investment pitches, including unregistered securities. More than half of all reported enforcement actions that involved a senior victim featured unregistered securities such as promissory notes, private offerings or investment contracts.
“State securities regulators like the Commerce Department are on the front lines working to ensure a safe and fair investment marketplace,” said Rothman. “We serve a vital role in protecting everyday investors, especially those who lack the expertise, experience, and resources to fully safeguard their own interests.”