Episode 93: Core Compliance & Starkweather & Shepley's CCO of the Year Award

On episode 93 of the CCO Buzz podcast, Marketing Specialist Aimee Lastrella is joined by Starkweather & Shepley's Jessica Thayer to discuss our CCO of the Year Award.



CCO Buzz: Hello and welcome back! Today we have a special episode! Not only is it special because we have an extra episode before Thanksgiving, but its special because we’re joined by a special guest to discuss a special opportunity to highlight special CCO’s in the industry.

This year Core Compliance has partnered with Starkweather and Shepley to honor and celebrate the efforts and contributions of Chief Compliance Officers in the industry. This award is something we can hope to turn into an honoring series in the months and years to come. The goal is to shed some spotlight on exemplary compliance standards we see today and to show how colleagues in the industry have partnered their compliance programs to their firm’s growth and service model for continued success.

Today we’re joined by Jessica Thayer of Starkweather and Shepley. Welcome Jessica! This special episode is to discuss a few details about the nomination and selection process, as well as to discuss what we think would make a great CCO.

With that – Lets begin!

Jessica, understanding that this is a big honor and the first of many we plan to partner on. Could you share with me a bit of information on what you think makes a “CCO of the Year”?

Jessica Thayer: First of all, I want to thank you and the Core Compliance team for having me on the podcast. And yes, we at Starkweather & Shepley are super excited about this CCO of the Year Award. As you know, we work with CCO’s on a daily basis helping them transfer risk to insurance. We have seen the good, the bad and the ugly when it comes to compliance programs, and we’re always impressed with many CCO’s dedication to compliance and how it contributes to their firm’s success. Whether it be navigating new rules, reworking how a firm handles rules and regulations that have been in place for a long time, or finding innovative ways to make processes more efficient and robust, we see such focus and determination by these folks. The inquisitive nature and dedication to do things right is common among the successful CCO’s. With the pandemic CCO’s had to be nimble and open to new processes as many firms moved from a completely in-office setting to a remote setting and ensuring proper oversight was also important. Now is such a great time to recognize those that stand out and have gone above and beyond.

CCO Buzz: I couldn’t agree more. At Core Compliance, we see this award as a highlight for not only a CCO, but also the firm. Placing compliance as an essential part of business is difficult, especially in such a fluid market. And a CCO of the Year winner not only understands the importance of a strong, comprehensive program, but also makes it a priority for all departments, levels, and positions. They focus on setting the tone from the top, they transform their compliance programs based on new business strategies and goals, they ensure the understanding and comprehensive implementation of new initiatives for their firm when assessing vulnerabilities and areas of risk.

Now we ask a few specific questions in the nomination form, why don’t we share some insight on what each of our organizations is looking for within some of those questions.

Jessica Thayer: Great! I’ll go first. We really are looking to get to know our candidate. Many CCO’s have contributed to other firms, or to the industry, not just their current firm. We want to hear all about those accomplishments and how they create continued success.

CCO’s are known for working though regulatory issues, but others have made great strides being innovative and finding new ways to do tasks that becomes much more efficient and helpful in each employee of the firm’s day to day activities. This should not go unnoticed and will be in an area to highlight within our nomination form.

I’m excited to understand also what new roads have been paved by our candidates, whether they have been in the industry for many years, or just a few. Maybe our candidates are thought leaders in a specific niche or have helped other CCO’s or others within the industry with training or various industry programs.

Real life examples are also key. Perhaps there is a direct correlation between the compliance framework the CCO has designed and client satisfaction. We definitely want to hear these success stories and perhaps have clients provide testimonials. Those testimonials will be helpful when analyzing all of the candidates.

CCO Buzz: I’m so glad we’re on the same wavelength. At Core Compliance we’re looking at each question on a specific level.

For the “why your nominee should be selected for CCO of the Year” question, we’d ideally like to see the impact the CCO has made to the overall business and how it has strengthened the value and importance of compliance at the firm.

Another question targets the new environment and the nuances of the industry. The “what has the nominee done to create and leverage compliance for continuous growth and innovation at your firm/company” question plays to the understanding of how your CCO and your compliance program addressed the new founded limitations of remote work, but also the service demands of clients with a constantly evolving technology. How did they marry the two? What changed? Has your program or your policies and procedures benefited? How has your firm streamlined your processes and leveraged compliance?

The third integral portion for the nomination is, how has the nominee contributed to the company’s success, as well as their contributions to the industry overall. At Core Compliance, we believe that compliance is just a cornerstone to continued growth and success. Effective CCOs and compliance programs are not seen as limitations to business expansion, but rather a partner for firm innovation and growth. We want to gauge the efforts and success of a CCO and the influence they’ve had not only at their firm, but also industry wide.

When we think of our CCO of the Year Award recipient, we see them as an industry influencer. They are passionate about compliance and continuously share their experiences, their knowledge, and their journey. It could be a number of ways, be it training sessions, webinars, trade association presentations, conference appearances, articles, blog posts – the full gamut, anything and everything.

As for specific business accomplishments, community involvement and the summary bio, we’re looking for these specific responses to really add a little bit more context or to edge one nomination over the other - should it be difficult to choose amongst our nominations for the CCO of the Year.

Now Jessica, I know there may be a bit of confusion when it comes to our selections process, do you mind shedding some light on how we will be evaluating and selecting our finalists and grand winner?

Jessica Thayer: Absolutely. So Core Compliance and Starkweather & Shepley have created a committee to review these nominations. We’re looking for those that give not only to their firm, but the industry community. The CCO’s that we are looking to provide this award to go above in beyond each and every day. They’re not only focused on exceeding the regulatory parameters, but heavily focused on doing what is right and best for clients is a driving factor in each and every decision that is made.

CCO Buzz: I couldn’t have said it better myself. Now what can finalists and the winner expect?

Jessica Thayer: So the nomination form deadline is November 30th. After the 1st of the year, we’ll announce our finalists and the winner of the CCO of the Year Award. The CCO of the Year finalists will be recognized by both Core Compliance and Starkweather & Shepley through our social media platforms and on our websites. We’ll also be providing a badge to the finalists and a plaque to the winner of the award. Very exciting!

CCO Buzz: Wow, what an honor! Before I let you go, Jessica, thank you again for joining us today for this special episode of the CCO Buzz! Is there anything else you’d like to add?

Jessica Thayer: We’re just so excited to provide the first annual award this year and to do it with Core Compliance. We’re really looking forward to learning more about our CCO candidates. We have already received quite a few forms and have seen candidates with impressive achievements. Like I mentioned before we work daily with these CCOs and see their tireless energy pinpointed at compliance and we are excited to be able to reward those that show exemplary success.

Also, just note our nominations are still open, so if you do know anyone you can nominate them until November 30th at 5PM (PST). We also do take self-nominations and we cannot wait to review your responses! Please feel free to either visit our websites or check out our social media posts.

CCO Buzz: Or you can click the link below for a direct link to the nomination form.

Jessica Thayer: Yes, thank you! And thank you Core Compliance for having me and partnering in this award- I cannot wait to see what other honors and awards we have in the future. To all the CCO Buzz listeners- Thank you again and I can’t wait for your nominations! Happy Early Thanksgiving!

CCO Buzz: Well that’s it for this week’s episode. If you’d like additional information, please check out our website at www.corecls.com. You can also follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter @CoreCls. Thank you, and we hope you tune-in to next week's episode of the CCO Buzz.



Nominate for the CCO of the Year Award Today!