Darlene Pasieczny (“Pah-shetch-nee”) leads the Investor Defenders team, with support from our SYK litigators and paralegal staff.
Her wide range of experience and knowledge in the field of securities litigation, elder financial abuse, and FINRA arbitration gives her the edge to help her clients recover investment losses (Watch Video). Based in Portland, Oregon, Darlene is licensed in Oregon and Washington but her FINRA arbitration practice enables her to represent investors nationwide.
Darlene also represents parties in other financial and fiduciary litigation as well as related appellate cases. These include representing trustees, beneficiaries, and other interested parties in trust and estate disputes such as will contests, undue influence, and nonjudicial amendments to trust terms. Other type of cases include shareholder rights cases, and elder financial abuse. Sometimes these matter involve financial professionals, and sometimes they unfortunately involve friends, family, trusted caretakers, or other professionals like CPAs and accountants.
Her Investor Defender practice group focuses on investor protection and investment loss recovery for individuals, fiduciaries, groups of investors in court and FINRA arbitration. The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the self-regulatory organization that regulates and licenses securities brokerage firms and individual brokers across the country. FINRA arbitration is the main forum in the securities industry for resolution of legal disputes between investors and these industry professionals.
FINRA arbitration is a specialized forum with its own procedural rules – and Darlene knows how to navigate them.
Darlene regularly works with state and federal securities regulators to improve the procedural rules of this forum and advocating for fairness in the securities industry. Darlene also serves as a FINRA arbitrator.
In addition, Darlene’s years of service work with the Public Investors Advocate Bar Association (PIABA) gives her first-hand knowledge of upcoming FINRA rule changes. PIABA is an international bar association whose members represent investors in disputes with the securities industry. Darlene was awarded the 2017 Outstanding Service Award from PIABA for her dedicated work. She was elected to the PIABA Board of Directors in October, 2017.
She is an advocate for fairness and transparency in the securities industry.
In her law practice, Darlene brings a particular sensitivity to working with the all-too often targets of securities fraud — retirees and women investors from every level of investment experience. Pasieczny (pronounced “Pah-shetch-nee”) is a Polish surname. Her family instilled in her a strong emphasis on education, hard work, and justice for the underrepresented. Darlene is a Top Rated Securities Litigation Attorney by Oregon Super Lawyers, and was selected to the Rising Stars list for 2021 and Oregon Rising Stars 2022.
- Lewis & Clark Law School J.D.
– Magna cum laude
- Columbia University
– M.A. Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship in Humanistic Studies
- Reed College
– B.A. Phi Beta Kappa (Beta of Oregon)
Select Service, Honors & Awards
- FINRA’s National Arbitration & Mediation Committee (NAMC), Public Member, June 2021 – Present
- FINRA’s Zoom Task Force, Public Member, July 2021 – October 2022
- Oregon State Bar, Securities Regulation Section, Chair (2021); Executive Committee, 2020-2022
- Oregon State Bar, Appellate Practice Section, Executive Committee, 2022 – Present
- PIABA Board of Directors, 2017 – 2023; Treasurer 2019-2021
- Reed College Board of Trustees, Alumni Trustee, 2018 – 2022
- PIABA Outstanding Service Award, 2017
- Reed College Alumni Board, At-Large Member, 2015 – 2018
- Chair of Reed Career Alliance (RCA) Committee, 2016 – 2017, and co-founder of Reed Alumni Career Coaches
Each year, no more than 2.5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by the research team at Super Lawyers to receive the Rising Stars list honors. Super Lawyers, a Thomson Reuters business, is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The annual selections are made using a patented multiphase process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, an independent research evaluation of candidates and peer reviews by practice area. The result is a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of exceptional attorneys. The Super Lawyers lists are published nationwide in Super Lawyers Magazines and in leading city and regional magazines and newspapers across the country. Super Lawyers Magazines also feature editorial profiles of attorneys who embody excellence in the practice of law.
Select Speaking Engagements & Publications
- Speaker, “Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in FINRA Arbitrations,” Practising Law Institute (PLI), Securities Arbitration 2023, New York, NY, September 2023
- Speaker, “Updates in FINRA Arbitration,” Oregon State Bar Securities Regulation Section, Portland, OR, July 2023
- Speaker, “RIA Supervisory Duties: Claims and Resources for RIA Cases,” PIABA Annual Meeting, San Antonio, Texas, October 2022
- Speaker, “Recent and Upcoming Developments in FINRA Arbitration and Mediation,” Practicing Law Institute Securities Arbitration 2022, New York, NY, September 2022
- Speaker, “Financial Elder Abuse – State Civil Claims and Overview of a Financial Elder Abuse Case,” PIABA Mid-Year Meeting April 2022
- Speaker, “The Whole Picture: Maximizing Damages in Securities Cases” PIABA Annual Meeting, Amelia Island, FL, October 2021
- Speaker, “Liability Under the Oregon Securities Law: Landscapes and Minefields,” Multnomah Bar Association, Advising Oregon Businesses Fall Series, Portland, OR, October 2020
- Author, “States Adopting NASAA’s Model Act to Protect Vulnerable Adults from Financial Exploitation (Mandatory and Permissive Conduct by Financial Advisors),” PIABA Bar Journal, Vol. 26, No. 2 (2019)
- Moderator, “Two Case Studies in Securities Litigation: Aequitas SEC Receivership (OR) and Federal Home Loan v. Credit Suisse (WA),” 40th Annual Northwest Securities Institute, Seattle, WA, March 2020
- Speaker, “Recent Tools to Combat Financial Elder Abuse: Mandatory and Permissive Conduct Under FINRA Rules and Oregon Law for Securities Professionals,” Oregon Sate Bar Securities Regulation Section, Portland, February 2019
- Author, “New tools help financial professionals prevent elder abuse,” Oregon State Bar Elder Law Newsletter, Volume 22, January 2019
- Speaker, “Lunching with Fiduciary Litigators: Red Flags and Strategies for Oregon and Washington,” SYK Seminar Series, Portland, OR, July 2018
- Speaker, “Financial Elder Abuse, FINRA & State Legislation: What Securities Professionals, Financial Institutions, and Trust Companies Need to Know,” Portland, OR, July 2018
- Moderator, “The Speeding Train of Cryptocurrency Investments, Supervision, and Securities Regulation,” PIABA Mid-Year CLE, Los Angeles, CA, May, 2018
- Guest Speaker, Investor Protection Clinic, William S. Boyd School of Law, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, April 2018
- Speaker, “The Nuts and Bolts of SEC Whistle-blower Claims – and how the Recent Digital Realty case Changed the Landscape,” Oregon State Bar Securities Regulation Section, Portland, OR, March 2018
- Speaker, “Senate Bill 95, House Bill 2622, and FINRA Rules 2165 & 4512: What Oregon Securities Professionals, Financial Institutions, and Trust Companies Need to Know,” Samuels Yoelin Kantor LLP, Portland, OR, March 2018
- Speaker, “Senate Bill 95: Safeguarding Seniors,” FPA of Oregon & SW Washington, Portland, OR, February 2018
- Guest Speaker, St. John’s University School of Law, Securities Arbitration Clinic, Queens, NY, February 2018
- Moderator, “Cybersecurity: Regulation and Enforcement in the Battle of Attacks on Investors and Firm Information,” PIABA Securities Law Seminar, Colorado Springs, CO, October 2017
- Panelist, “FINRA Securities Dispute Resolution – What Lies Beyond the Task Force?” 19th Annual ABA Section of Dispute Resolution Spring Conference, San Francisco, CA, 2017
- Speaker, “War & PEAC: Negotiating with the Tech Industry over Fiduciary Access to Digital Property,” Northwest Planned Giving Roundtable Annual Conference, Portland, Fall 2016
- Speaker, “War & PEAC: Negotiating with the Tech Industry over Fiduciary Access to Digital Property,” SW Washington Estate Planning Council, Vancouver, WA, 2016
- Speaker, “Red Flags in Your Incoming Client’s Portfolio? What You Should Know About Securities Claims for Recovering Investment Losses,” Financial Planning Association of Oregon and SW Washington, Portland, OR, 2016
- Moderator, “Blowing the Whistle Under Dodd-Frank & SOX: The SEC’s and CFTC’s Whistle-blower Program,” PIABA Securities Law Seminar, San Diego, CA, 2016
- Moderator, “Clearing Firm Liability,” PIABA Securities Law Seminary, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, 2015
- Speaker, “Creditors’ Claims,” Oregon Law Institute, 2015 ABCs of Decedents’ Estate Administration, Portland, OR, 2015
- Panelist, “Latest Developments in FINRA Securities Arbitration,” 17th Annual ABA Section of Dispute Resolution Spring Conference, Seattle, WA, 2015
- Speaker, “Recent Developments at FINRA“, 33rd Annual Northwest Securities Institute, Portland, OR, 2013
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