Accordo is a financial services compliance consultancy offering comprehensive solutions. Our holistic approach combines deep regulatory compliance expertise with scalable technology to provide the precise level of service needed for each of our clients.
Robert Masi, Managing Partner
Mr. Masi is a founding partner of Accordo. He is a former FINRA Examiner with fifteen years of experience in financial services compliance and regulation. Prior to founding Accordo, he was a Senior Consultant with an international compliance consulting firm. From 2004 to 2010, he was an Associate Principal Examiner in the New York City District Office of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). During his FINRA tenure, Mr. Masi was responsible for conducting routine cycle examinations, branch exams and specialized cause investigations of broker-dealers and registered representatives. Prior to working at FINRA, Mr. Masi worked at Sonic Financial Technologies (prior to its acquisition by ConvergEx) in New York, where he assisted the Compliance Department and Back Office. Additionally, he worked with the Institutional Sales Group and was the Project Manager responsible for the implementation of trading technology for institutional trading desks. Mr. Masi holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance and Accounting with a minor in Economics from Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business, and is a participant in the CRCP FINRA Program at Wharton. He is also a member of the National Society of Compliance Professionals.
John Higgins, Executive Vice President of Business Development
Mr. Higgins is a veteran of the Financial Services space with forty years in the industry. Prior to joining the Accordo team, he spent ten years in fund administration, holding various senior level positions. He also ran marketing units for the New York Mercantile Exchange and was a principle in two Futures Commission Merchants. Mr. Higgins has been on various industry boards including the Managed Futures Association, the IPMI, and the Silver Institute. He has previously held the Series 3 – Commodity Futures, Series 7 – General Securities, and Series 63 – Uniform State licenses. He has also participated in numerous industry continuing education programs, most recently on Anti-Money Laundering regulations in the EU jurisdictions.
Mr. Palleschi is an experienced compliance risk officer with broad expertise in both retail and institutional investment products, investment advisory and all aspects of broker-dealer compliance. He brings over twenty-eight years of financial industry compliance experience to Accordo. Mr. Palleschi was formerly a Senior Vice President and Deputy Compliance Director at Morgan Stanley, and Director and Senior Control Officer at UBS. In his twenty-five year affiliation with Morgan Stanley, Mr. Palleschi served various functions in the Law and Compliance Departments. From 1994 to 2005, he served as Deputy Director of Compliance responsible for all aspects of product Compliance, including the trading desks and product departments. Mr. Palleschi is also a FINRA Arbitrator and former member of both the CBOE Advisory and NYSE Disciplinary Panels. He also serves as a litigation consultant providing expert witness testimony.
Mr. Metz is a specialist in Securities and Commodities Compliance and Law, Anti-Money Laundering Compliance and Risk Management. He has expertise in Bitcoins and swaps, and has helped foreign companies become registered as US Broker-Dealers. Mr. Metz was Senior Counsel, Chief Compliance and AML Officer at Man Financial from 2006 to 2009. From 1984 to 2006, Mr. Metz worked for various subsidiaries of Prudential Financial as Senior Counsel and/or Compliance Officer, including Chief Compliance Officer, Privacy Officer and AML Officer. He also represented Prudential as Counsel as well as testified in arbitrations and regulatory hearings. He has been a frequent speaker at Industry Conferences, has held executive positions in industry-wide associations and is accredited with ACAMS.
Philip Ciantro has a seventeen-year career in the financial markets, serving in various roles as a risk manager, trader and salesperson. Mr. Ciantro joined FINRA in 2007, where he served as an integral part of FINRA’s examination staff. During his six-year tenure with FINRA, Phil spent three years as a Principal Examiner, conducting sales practice examinations of FINRA members. He conducted solo examinations of small FINRA members in both New York and London, branch examinations for large clearing firms and served as lead examiner for examinations of the largest FINRA members. In his last three years with FINRA, Mr. Ciantro served as a Principal Regulatory Coordinator for 35 introducing broker-dealers and 10 clearing firms. Mr. Ciantro holds an MBA and a Masters in Accountancy from Baruch College and FINRA Series 7, 24 and 27 Financial and Operations Principal licenses.
Other members of our consulting team collectively bring over seventy-five years of financial services compliance experience as in-house and interim Compliance and Chief Compliance Officers, and former FINRA and SEC Examination Staff. Their experience includes all aspects of securities and futures brokerage, capital raising, asset and wealth management compliance. Our team is dedicated to applying their skills to provide hands-on, real-time support to our clients.
Ms. Godyla is Project Manager, Recruiting and Marketing Associate and Office Manager at Accordo, where she began as an intern in 2013. Ms. Godyla has played an integral role in building out the firm’s overall marketing strategy, including running campaigns, conducting market research, managing the development of RegTech tools, and supporting internal operations. Prior to Accordo, she worked as a freelancer for the Economic State Development Agency for New York City, focusing on the development of their new website. Ms. Godyla graduated from the University of Rochester with a dual degree in Financial Economics and Russian, and is working towards fluency in both Russian and German.