My name is Sally Afonso and I am the author of Compliance Culture. I also write on Twitter at @complyblog. I am an experienced compliance and ethics advisor. I have spent my compliance career in financial services – first for a boutique investment advisor with institutional clients and then for an international bank with a focus on corporate banking – and have a previous background in law.
I began working as a compliance officer in 2007 and therefore came of age in my profession during the 2008 financial crisis. The global economic meltdown led me to a strong interest in organizational and employee integrity with a focus on unethical decision-making and possible defense strategies for companies. I want to position compliance as a fundamental discipline in business and as a force to affect meaningful change in the value organizations and individuals place on integrity, both in public and private. I am especially interested in questioning how to effectively embed a culture of compliance in highly regulated businesses, such as international banking, and in disruptive, emerging enterprises, such as tech start-ups.
I have noticed a need for a blog to provide a resource for compliance professionals as well as to provoke interest in non-professionals. I am passionate about compliance and ethics and I believe that integrity – the determination to do the right thing for the right reason at the right time – is perhaps the defining characteristic of humankind. Yet, we fall short in our pursuit of this quality time and again. It could be that society takes an overly narrow view of why morality and ethical behavior are important, or who is responsible for these principles, or when we need to worry about them. I hope to contribute to evolving past this limited framework and making compliance a more frequent and fluent topic of conversation.
On a personal note, when I am not working or writing about compliance, I love cooking, reading mystery and thriller novels, and traveling. I am from the United States and now live with my husband and cat in the center of Amsterdam. Let’s Go Islanders!