SBIA hires former DOJ attorney to advise on regulatory issues

The Small Business Investor Alliance, an association for lower middle market private equity funds and investors, has hired Christopher Hayes as its legislative and regulatory counsel. Hayes most recently worked with the U.S. Department of Justice’s civil division, commercial litigation branch, working on financial fraud cases involving financial institutions in connection with the 2008 subprime mortgage crisis.

Press Release

The Small Business Investor Alliance (SBIA), the leading association for lower middle market private equity funds and investors, today announced that it has brought on Christopher Hayes as its Legislative and Regulatory Counsel. Hayes will advise the SBIA on financial compliance and regulatory issues as well as engage in legislative outreach in Congress.

“Chris will be a valuable asset as we continue to address the pressing regulatory issues that affect the ability of our members to provide capital and nurture growth in lower middle market businesses across the United States” said Brett Palmer, President of the SBIA. “Our team will benefit greatly from his seasoned regulatory and financial policy experience and prior enforcement work with financial regulatory agencies.”

Hayes has broad experience in financial regulation and securities law. Most recently, he worked with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Division, Commercial Litigation Branch, assisting DOJ staff in litigating cases involving financial fraud against certain financial institutions in connection with the 2008 subprime mortgage crisis under the False Claims Act and FIRREA. Prior to that, Hayes served as State Regulatory Affairs Counsel at the Financial Services Institute (FSI), a trade association of independent broker dealers and financial advisers, where he was responsible for building relationships and advocating on behalf of members with securities regulators at the state and federal level. He also served as a subject matter expert at the association on regulations including the Investment Advisers Act, ’33 and ’34 Acts, state blue sky laws, the JOBS Act, and MSRB and FINRA rules. Hayes also led the association’s in-state outreach program to state securities regulators and NASAA and worked closely on state regulatory issues impacting non-traded BDCs and REITS.

Hayes has also previously worked for financial regulatory agencies including the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)’s Office of Fraud Detection & Market Intelligence, where he investigated, analyzed and built insider trading enforcement cases against alleged violators of federal securities laws and FINRA rules. During law school, Chris served as a law clerk in the Enforcement Division of the Securities and Exchange Commission and with the democratic staff of the Senate Banking Committee during the writing of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform & Consumer Protection Act. Chris also served as a legal intern with the California securities regulator and as a judicial extern during the subprime loan crisis for the Honorable Erithe A. Smith, in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Orange County, California, Prior to law school, Chris worked on the trading floor handling securities lending and the trading of exchange traded funds (ETFs) at a large financial institution in Boston, Massachusetts.

Hayes received his law degree from the University of San Diego, School of Law in 2010 and his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 2005. Chris is a member of the California bar, is pending bar admission in the District of Columbia, and is admitted to the U.S. District Courts for the Northern, Southern, Eastern and Central Districts of California, as well as the 9th Circuit Court of Appeal.

About the Small Business Investor Alliance (SBIA)

The Small Business Investor Alliance (SBIA) is the premier organization of lower middle market private equity funds and investors. SBIA members provide vital capital to small businesses nationwide, resulting in economic growth and job creation. SBIA has been playing a pivotal role in promoting the growth and vitality of the private equity industry for more than 50 years. For more information, visit or call 202-628-5055.