The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is looking to hire a crypto specialist attorney advisor for its Division of Trading and Markets (TM). The new job listing was posted on March 29 to the official government employment portal, USAJobs.
The successful candidate will reportedly be tasked with establishing “a comprehensive plan to address crypto and digital asset securities” in coordination with TM staff and members of other SEC offices and divisions.
The new hire would be expected to develop and maintain expert-level industry knowledge of crypto and digital asset securities as well as related products, and to serve as the division’s point of contact for domestic and global regulators, market participants and the wider public.
Other crucial responsibilities will reportedly include “applying knowledge of federal securities laws to digital asset securities and crypto matters, i.e., broker-dealer, exchange, clearing agency and transfer registrations, exchange product applications, sales and trading practices, etc.”
The new hire will further be tasked with conducting regular meetings with TM and other agency staff to foster open communication and a shared understanding of core issues, as well as keeping departments abreast of relevant industry, legal and policy developments.
With a prospective salary of $144,850–$238,787 a year for a full-time role (commencing with a two-year trial period), applicants must fulfil certain conditions to be eligible to apply for the post.
These include holding a Juris Doctor (J.D.) or Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.) degree, as well as being an active member of the Federal Bar Association in good standing.
Applicants must also demonstrate evidence of four years of post J.D. experience as a practicing attorney, three years of which should have included interpreting and applying laws governing the securities industry, in particular, the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
They are also asked to indicate they have provided “guidance and expertise in the evaluation of legal and policy issues, addressing securities law issues that often lack clearly applicable precedents due to the novelty of the issues, analyzing the factual and legal issues involved.”
As reported, the SEC took its first steps toward engaging new talent specifically tasked with clarifying crypto regulatory matters with its June 2018 hire of Valerie Szczepanik — colloquially known as the SEC’s “Crypto Czar.”
In her role as associate director of the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance — as well as its senior advisor for Digital Assets and Innovation — Szczepanik indicated this March that assets in the rapidly-growing stablecoin sector could experience issues under existing securities laws.
Multiple crypto industry figures and lawmakers have repeatedly called on the SEC to provide greater regulatory clarity for the interaction of blockchain-based tokens and securities laws.