Elizabeth J. Reza
Elizabeth is a partner in the asset management group and co-head of the firm’s registered funds practice. Elizabeth counsels asset managers on regulatory issues that affect the creation and operation of registered investment companies, including the development, organization and offering of new funds; the creation and implementation of compliance programs; the preparation and review of disclosure in offering documents, shareholder communications, and advertising materials; the establishment of effective governance structures and practices; and the preparation of responses to regulatory inquiries and investigations. Elizabeth works regularly with asset managers to design and structure registered fund products (including open-end funds, closed-end funds, and interval funds) that invest in alternative investment strategies. She also has significant experience advising with respect to fund mergers, including large-scale projects involving many funds both within a single complex and across unaffiliated complexes.
Elizabeth regularly advises asset managers on matters relating to their SEC registration; preparation of, and updates to, their Form ADV filings/brochures and other SEC filings; and compliance with Investment Advisers Act requirements. Elizabeth prepares (or assists clients in drafting) compliance policies and procedures, and keeps clients informed of regulatory changes that may affect their compliance program.
Elizabeth counsels independent director/trustee clients regarding their oversight of fund complexes, including committee structures and functions; approval of advisory contracts and distribution arrangements; and board and peer evaluations. She works closely with her independent director/trustee clients to help them discharge their fiduciary duties, while also helping to facilitate practical solutions that enable the funds’ adviser and board to work together in the best interests of fund shareholders.
- Represents the Voya Funds mutual fund and closed end fund complex.
- Represents the Stone Ridge Funds mutual fund and closed end fund complex and Stone Ridge Asset Management.
- Represents the Independent Trustees of the Nationwide Funds.
- Represents the Independent Trustees of the DWS Funds.
- Represents Grantham, Mayo, Van Otterloo & Co., LLC and the GMO mutual fund complex on a wide range of matters as primary outside counsel.
- Represents the Independent Trustees of the MFS Funds and the MFS Funds mutual fund and closed end fund complex.
- Represents several asset managers on a wide range of regulatory and compliance matters relevant to their services to mutual funds and separate account clients.
- Quoted, “SEC Has More Words, but Not Clarity, About Fair Valuation,” BoardIQ (December 17, 2019)
- Quoted, “Boards Can Decide Some Proxy Issues Without Vote: ICI,” BoardIQ (June 18, 2019)
- Quoted, “‘Happier Directors’ If SEC Says More About Good Faith,” BoardIQ (April 9, 2019)
- Quoted, “Mandatory age limits are gaining traction, but boards still split on the benefits,” Fund Directions (January 10, 2019)
- Quoted, “2019 Outlook: What's keeping directors up at night?,” Fund Directions (December 20, 2018)
- Quoted, “Foregoing a Raise (Even When You Could Take One),” BoardIQ (July 17, 2018)
- Quoted, “In Quest for Cyber Security, Don’t Forget About Vendors,” BoardIQ (April 10, 2018)
- Co-author, “Increased Enforcement Activity Underscores Need for Firms to Conduct Rigorous Cybersecurity Oversight,” Wolters Kluwer’s Securities Regulation Daily (May 24, 2018)
- Quoted, “Getting Boards Comfortable With Alts Funds,” Fund Action (April 3, 2014)
- Quoted, “Boards Push for Brain Gain as Alternative Allocations Grow,” BoardIQ (April 9, 2013)
- Quoted, “Deadline Approaches On Mass. Data Privacy,” Compliance Intelligence (January 17, 2012)
- “What’s the Fine Print of Money Fund Bailout,” Ignites (October 29, 2008)
- Panelist, “Board Update: A Roundtable Discussion,” Investment Company Institute 2018 Mutual Funds and Investment Management Conference (March 19, 2018)
- Moderator, “Managing Board Materials,” 2017 IDC Fund Directors Conference (October 23, 2017)
- Speaker, “Board Oversight of Fair Valuation: Current Practices and Themes,” Independent Directors Council Webinar (May 22, 2017)
- Panelist, “Looking to the Future: What Funds Should Expect in 2016,” Investment Company Institute 2015 Securities Law Developments Conference (December 2015)
- Presenter, “Independent Directors Council,” Boston Chapter Meeting (April 2015)
- Panelist, “Trends in Fund Board Structure and Composition,” ICI Mutual Insurance Company 2015 Risk Management Conference (April 2015)
- Panelist, “Cybersecurity Threats: Not If, but When,” Independent Directors Council 2014 Fund Directors Conference (November 2014)
- Moderator, “Ukraine, Russia and the Effects of Sanctions on Asset Management Firms and Their Clients,” Ropes & Gray webinar (April 2014)
- Moderator, “Board Oversight of Alternative Funds,” Mutual Fund Directors Forum 2014 Policy Conference (April 2014)
- Presenter, “Evaluating Your Information Security Program: Asset Management Firms,” Ropes & Gray webinar (February 2014)
- Panelist, “Alternative Investment Funds and Other New Products,” Independent Directors Council 2013 Fund Directors Conference (October 2013)
- Presenter, “Data Security and Handling Risks for Asset Management Firms,” Ropes & Gray webinar (June 2013)
- Presenter, “Registered Alternative Investment Products,” Independent Directors Council webinar (March 2013)
- Moderator, “Performance Advertising and Social Media,” Investment Adviser Association 2013 Compliance Conference (March 2013)
- Moderator, “Alternative Investments: What are They?,” Mutual Fund Directors Forum/University of Maryland Robert H. Smith School of Business program on “Board Oversight of Alternative Investments” (November 2012)
- Presenter, “IAA Compliance Workshop,” on Advertising and Social Media and Private Fund Issues (October 2012)
- Presenter, “Registered Alternative Investment Products: Review of Products, Board Considerations and Developments,” Independent Directors Council, Boston Chapter Meeting (September 2012)
- Panelist, “RICs and Commodity Market Exposure: Available Investment Options in the Current Climate,” Joint Fall CLE meeting: ABA Tax Section, Investment Management Committee (September 2012)
- Presenter, “Keeping Current with Regulatory Issues that Affect Investment Advisers,” NRS-Investment Adviser Association Regulatory Update (May 2012)
- Facilitator, Independent Directors Council’s “2012 Investment Company Directors Workshop,” discussion group on Portfolio Performance (May 2012)
- Presenter, “CFTC Rescinds or Revises Registration Exemptions: Implications for Mutual Funds,” Ropes & Gray webinar (February 2012)
- Panelist, KPMG’s Audit Committee Institute Session on Mutual Funds (December 2011)
- Presenter, “Disclosure: Form ADV Part 1 and Part 2, Performance and Advertising,” NRS - Investment Adviser Association compliance training program (September 2011)
- Presenter, “The Next Generation of Form ADV,” Ropes & Gray webinar (February 2011)
- Presenter, “IAA Compliance Workshop” on Form ADV, Part 2 and Investment Adviser Custody (December 2010)
- JD, Columbia University School of Law, 1997; Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar; Member, Law Review
- BA, Columbia College, Columbia University, 1992
Admissions / Qualifications
- Legal 500 (2019-2020)
- Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business (2016-2020)
- Chambers Global (2020)
- IFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms, Rising Star (2014-2020)
- Columbia Law School Latino/a Law Students Association, Distinguished Alumna Award (2011)