People

Meredith B. Cross

Partner

Cross, Meredith

Meredith Cross is a partner in the Transactional and Securities Departments, and a member of the Corporate Practice and Strategic Response Group. Ms. Cross advises public companies and their boards on disclosure and other corporate finance securities law and corporate governance matters. She handles matters for companies with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, including no-action letters, financial statement waiver requests, and disclosure and financial statement reviews by staff of the Division of Corporation Finance, as well as SEC enforcement matters involving corporate finance issues.

Ms. Cross rejoined the firm in 2013, after having served as Director of the Division of Corporation Finance of the SEC since 2009. Representing clients in corporate and securities matters, she has experience with the full range of issues faced by public and private companies in capital raising and public reporting.

Practice

Ms. Cross's practice is primarily focused on advising public companies on corporate finance securities law matters, including disclosure and other requirements under the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as well as the requirements under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. She also serves as issuer's counsel and underwriters' counsel in public and private offerings of debt and equity securities. Learn more about Ms. Cross' practice and how she can support your startup on WilmerHaleLaunch.com
 
While serving as the Director of the Division of Corporation Finance of the SEC, Ms. Cross led the Division's efforts to implement both the Dodd-Frank Act and the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act. Under her leadership, the Division recommended close to 60 rulemaking releases to the Commission, including those relating to say-on-pay, conflict minerals, proxy access, compensation committees and compensation advisers, asset-backed securities, and the new regulatory regime for derivatives. Ms. Cross also guided the Division's pragmatic response to numerous issues relating to the IPO "on-ramp" provisions of the JOBS Act. During her tenure, Ms. Cross testified before Congress numerous times on a broad range of issues including corporate governance, capital formation, risk retention in asset-backed securities offerings, executive compensation oversight, and agency management and budget.
 
Before first joining WilmerHale in 1998, Ms. Cross served as Deputy Director of the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance. During her prior SEC tenure, she was involved with a number of corporate finance rulemakings, including changes to shelf registration, electronic delivery of prospectuses and other information to investors, the plain English initiatives, limited partnership roll-up rules, and small issue exemptions from registration and reporting. Before becoming Deputy Director, Ms. Cross served as Associate Director of the Division's sections on International Corporate Finance and Small Business. In the international area, she played a key role in the ongoing development of international disclosure and accounting standards for use in cross-border offerings. Ms. Cross also previously served as the Division's Chief Counsel. As Chief Counsel, she was responsible for no-action letters and legal interpretations in the Division on a wide range of matters, including Rule 144, Section 16, registration of employee benefit plans and exemptions from registration and reporting.

Professional Activities

Ms. Cross currently serves as Vice Chairman of the Securities Regulation Institute, and she is a frequent speaker at securities law conferences sponsored by the Practicing Law Institute, the American Bar Association and the American Society of Corporate Secretaries & Governance Professionals.

Ms. Cross is a member of the SEC Institute Advisory Committee, the ABA Corporate Laws Committee and a member of the Board of Governors of the Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins.

Honors & Awards

  • Recommended in the 2016 edition of The Legal 500 United States for her M&A/Corporate and Commercial: Corporate Goverance practice
  • Recognized for her exceptional securities practice in the 2006-2009, 2014, 2015 and 2016 editions of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business
  • Selected by peers for inclusion in the 2005-2017 editions of Best Lawyers in America for securities and capital markets law. Named by Best Lawyers as Washington DC Securities/Capital Markets "Lawyer of the Year" in 2017. 
  • Named a Fellow of the American College of Governance Counsel in 2015
  • Recipient of the 2014 Linda Quinn Lifetime Achievement Award by TheCorporateCounsel.net
  • Named to the NACD Directorship 100, A Who's Who of the American Corporate Governance Community, in 2010
  • Recognized as a Dealmaker of the Year by The American Lawyer in 2003

Publications & News

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December 2, 2016

Change and Continuity in Securities Regulation

Given the fluidity of the regulatory environment, making accurate predictions regarding what to expect from the SEC under a new Administration and a new Chair is difficult. Nevertheless, in this Client Alert we explore possible key areas of securities regulation that may be affected under the new Administration.

August 15, 2016

WilmerHale Lawyers Named Among the 2017 Best Lawyers in America®, Six Recognized as Lawyers of the Year

Best Lawyers in America®—a respected peer-review publication in the legal industry—recognizes 101 WilmerHale lawyers and names six partners as Lawyers of the Year in its 23rd edition.

June 22, 2016

The Legal 500 United States 2016 Recognizes 111 WilmerHale Lawyers Across 30 Practice Areas

The guide's rankings are based on a series of criteria, including client feedback, interviews with private practice lawyers, and its own research.

May 27, 2016

WilmerHale Lawyers and Practices Recognized in 2016 Edition of Chambers USA

Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business announced its final rankings for the 2016 edition, with WilmerHale ranking among the nation's best in 47 practice area categories. Chambers also ranked 82 WilmerHale lawyers as leaders in their respective fields.

May 25, 2016

Applying the New SEC Staff Guidance on Non-GAAP Measures to Your Next Earnings Announcement

All public companies should consider and address the SEC staff's new guidance, as well as other recent developments regarding the use of non-GAAP measures, as they prepare for their next earnings announcement. To help you work through the implications of the new guidance, we discuss the new and revised CDIs, and offer our analysis of key takeaways and action items.

March 24, 2016

2016 IPO Report

Our 2016 IPO Report offers a detailed analysis of, and outlook for, the IPO market, plus useful IPO market metrics. We look at rates of adoption of JOBS Act relief by emerging growth companies, recent FAST Act amendments that further streamline the IPO process and much more.

December 10, 2015

Overview of Securities Law Provisions of the FAST Act

On December 4, 2015, President Obama signed into law the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act. The FAST Act, which is aimed principally at authorizing spending on highway and transit projects, includes several amendments to the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act (JOBS Act) and other securities law provisions, some of which are effective immediately.

May 19, 2015

WilmerHale Practices, Lawyers Ranked Among Nation’s Best by Chambers USA

Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business announced its final rankings for the 2015 edition, with WilmerHale ranking among the nation's best in 46 practice area categories. Chambers also ranked 86 WilmerHale attorneys as leaders in their respective fields.

May 8, 2015

SEC Proposes Dodd-Frank Pay-Versus-Performance Disclosure Rules

On April 29, 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) voted 3-2 to propose new rules requiring companies to disclose the relationship between executive compensation “actually paid” and the company’s “financial performance.”

May 1, 2015

SEC Adopts Rules to Implement Regulation A+, Providing New Avenue for Capital Formation

On March 25, 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission adopted amendments to Regulation A pursuant to Section 401 of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act for offers and sales of up to $50 million of securities annually. Regulation A+ creates two tiers of offerings that are exempt from registration under the Securities Act of 1933.

Practices

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Education

JD, Vanderbilt University Law School, 1982, Order of the Coif, Vanderbilt Law Review

BA, cum laude, Duke University, 1979

Bar Admissions

District of Columbia

Clerkships

The Hon. Albert J. Henderson, US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

Government Experience

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