James Cox, a Duke University law professor and expert on the SEC, predicted White will push the SEC away from “being just a tollkeeper” that collects settlements and make it a forceful agency that brings meaningful sanctions against senior individuals.
“She has a high sense of the public purpose of the law,” Cox said. “You've got to change the culture of the SEC to the point where you're willing to say, `We're going to go after the individual.'”
In 2000, White led the prosecution of more than 100 people — including members of all five New York Mafia families — accused of strong-arming brokers and manipulating prices of penny stocks. The action was one of the biggest crackdowns on securities fraud in U.S. history at the time.
White's office also won a record $606 million in restitution from the securities arm of the Republic New York Corp. bank in 2001.