Robert A. Cohen will join Davis Polk & Wardwell in October 2019 as a partner and a member of the firm’s White Collar Criminal Defense and Government Investigations Group, where he will focus on representing companies and boards in regulatory matters and internal investigations. He joins Davis Polk from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, where he served for 15 years in the Division of Enforcement, most recently as Chief of the Cyber Unit. During his tenure at the agency, Mr. Cohen was involved in significant enforcement actions involving securities fraud, insider trading, market manipulation and abuse, financial fraud, cryptocurrency and cybersecurity. His wide-ranging experience at the SEC and extensive knowledge of the financial markets and the cryptocurrency and cybersecurity fields will add further depth and strength to the firm’s premier white collar practice.
As the first-ever Chief of the Division of Enforcement’s Cyber Unit, Mr. Cohen supervised investigations concerning initial coin offerings and other conduct involving cryptocurrency, cybersecurity events, controls and disclosures at broker-dealers, investment advisers, stock exchanges and public companies, and cyber-related market manipulations.
From 2015 to 2017, Mr. Cohen served as Co-Chief of the SEC’s Market Abuse Unit, supervising market structure and trading investigations, including violations by national securities exchanges, dark pools and large broker-dealers, complex insider trading, and large-scale manipulation.
Mr. Cohen was an Assistant Director in the Enforcement Division from 2010 to 2013. He joined the SEC in 2004.
Mr. Cohen received a B.S. from Cornell University in 1994 and a J.D. from New York University School of Law in 1997. He served as a law clerk to the Honorable Alexander Williams Jr. of the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland.