ILPA’s Hayes exits to lobby for crypto platform

Chris Hayes, ILPA’s top lobbyist, is leaving. ILPA has already chosen a replacement.

Chris Hayes, senior policy counsel at the Institutional Limited Partners Association and a force behind the US Securities and Exchange Commission’s investor protection-focused proposed reforms to private fund regulation, is leaving the organization.

Christopher Hayes

Jennifer Choi, managing director of industry affairs at ILPA, will assume Hayes’s role. ILPA is hiring for a directory of legal and regulatory affairs, reporting to Choi.

Hayes ran ILPA’s government relations shop for almost five years. He leaves just as ILPA – long one voice among many private fund advocates – finds itself as one of the most powerful lobbies at the Commission.

SEC Chairman Gary Gensler has made clear that his sweeping private fund reform proposals are done with institutional investors foremost in mind. One of Gensler’s first public appearances as chairman was at an ILPA event on November 10, where he promised to crack down on fund advisers outsourcing their fiduciary duties in LP agreements.

Jennifer Choi

Hayes will lead government relations at the CELO Foundation, a nonprofit group that lobbies for cryptocurrency. It counts Jack Dorsey among its early backers, and claims its mission is support “the growth and development of the open-source Celo Platform” – an “open-source proof-of-stake blockchain designed to support stablecoins and tokenized assets.” The organization’s self-stated mission is “to build a financial system that creates the conditions for prosperity – for everyone.”

The timing is serendipitous: in the same Form PF reform proposals that Gensler has proposed is the first effort by any regulator to define digital assets.