A Profile of A Financial Leader

David Osio is the Chief Executive Officer of the Davos Financial Group, a group of independent and licensed companies that provide asset management and financial advisory services. He graduated from the Catholic University Andres Bello in Venezuela with a degree in law. Mr. Osio has also received training from the Financial Institute of New York and the Swiss Bank Corporation.

He began his illustrious career in 1981 as the President and CEO of OPED Enterprise. In 1984, he officially began his work in the world of banking law when he joined the law firm of MGO in Caracas, Venezuela. His experience as a legal advisor to several prestigious companies increased his banking knowledge, and lead to a leadership positions in the Private Banking Division of Banco Latino International in Miami. Throughout his career, he has also gained valuable training through the Swiss Bank Corporation and the American Banking Association.

By 1993, Mr. Osio was ready to begin his own enterprise, and he founded the Davos Financial Group of companies, the first Venezuelan company that provided financial advice to elite clientele. The goal of his companies are to provide services to clients that are tailored to their specific needs, and they have established themselves as a global competitive entity by entering into agreements with major banks around the world. In addition to these great accomplishments, Mr. Osio has made a commitment to promoting corporate social responsibility by consistently partnering with non-profit organizations who offer support to their respective communities. He has been a great benefactor in the arts community, serving on the Board of the Miami Symphony Orchestra and providing assistance to individual artists. His charitable support has also extended to the Wayuu Taya Foundation and the Children’s Orthopedic Hospital in Venezuela.

Such an accomplished career has brought Mr. Osio many awards and accolades. He has received the Medal of Honor from the United States Congress, and in 2009 he was named one of South Florida Business Leaders. His company was given the designation of Best Offshore Corporate Service Provider by New Europe magazine. Mr. Osio’s commitment to excellence has established him as an international leader.

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Compliance and Ethics Officers Need More Authority

Results of a new study show that there has been an increase in the number of compliance officers hired by companies. Lack of empowerment and inadequate training has led to the number of corporate scandals to remain constant.

Kevin Wilson, the CEO of Sterling Management, a practice-management-consulting company based in Los Angeles, says, “compliance officers simply have no power, knowledge or authority to act on the increased cases.”
I agree that the compliance officer’s position is filled with critical thinking gaps, little or no authority and people working in the wrong department.
I believe that salary contributes to the low reputation of this position. For example, the Volkswagen, the emissions software scandal led to massive losses by the company and severely damaged their reputation.
The average salary of a compliance officer in 2013 was $64,340. However, they are expected to exert their authority over executives, who earn 50 times more in bonuses alone. Having someone with a pile of papers serving as a compliance officer devalues the position.
I disagree with the notion that that power or lack of it the sole reason for the inability of the ethics officer to stop the scandals.
Companies need to increase the independence of the position and give the position the singular focus it deserves to enhance their effectiveness. I noted that very few CEOs wear the compliance officer’s hat. Normally, it is an afterthought or a secondary responsibility.
Based on the observations above I conclude only if the right person is chosen for the job can the position be of influence. The core CCO competencies are a sound business understanding, high integrity, discretion, sound judgment, understanding legal materials and excellent communication skills.
I believe that Compliance officers need autonomy, authority and the full backing of all the stakeholders in the business. If not, they risk throwing the entire company to the wolves.

Helane Morrison is a career lawyer. She has served as a director of enforcement programs in the Securities and Exchange Commission’s San Francisco District Office. Her intention is to ensure the maintenance of the offices aggressive during her tenure as the office administrator. She was the first woman to serve as district chief.
Morrison practiced law up to 1996 defending clients facing legal action instigated by the SEC and brokerage firms facing suits brought forward by customers. This experience helped her understand all compliance related issues.
To learn more about Helane’s career and life, connect with her on LinkedIn or find her on Crunchbase.