Richard Leisner is the firm’s senior securities lawyer. Since joining the firm in 1972, Richard’s broad-based corporate and securities law practice encompasses virtually all stages of the life cycle for public and private companies and their leaders and owners: all phases of capital formation and corporate transactions from start-up venture capital and Regulation D private placements through IPOs and ongoing SEC reporting, executive employment and equity-based benefits (stock options, etc), mergers and acquisitions (M&A), private equity, spin-offs and other reorganizations, takeover contests (offense and defense) and SEC and other regulatory investigations. Richard is also experienced in counseling Boards of Directors on corporate governance, fiduciary duty and regulatory compliance issues, as well as on the conduct of internal investigations.
A substantial portion of Richard’s practice is devoted to service as an expert witness in corporate and securities litigation and professional malpractice matters. Richard's expert witness practice includes federal and state courts, arbitration and both civil and criminal cases. For more information about Richard’s expert witness services, visit www.witnessthedifference.com.
- SEC Advisory Committee on Smaller Public Companies, 2005-2006
- National Association of Securities Dealers, Inc., Legal Advisory Board, 1999-2004
- American Bar Association, Section of Business Law
- Federal Regulation of Securities Committee
- Middle Market & Small Business Committee, Chair, 1997-2001
- Small Business Committee, Securities Regulation Subcommittee, Chair, 1986-1989
- Professor of Law (adjunct), Stetson University College of Law, “Introduction to Securities Regulation,” 1976-1979, 1981-1983
- Chair, Business Law Section, The Florida Bar, 1980-1981
EXPERT WITNESS TESTIMONY
- Federal and State Courts
- Civil and Criminal
Richard has authored articles in various publications, such as The Corporate Counsel, Business Law Today, Legal Economics, and Barron's.
- "General Solicitation Under Rule 506(b) After Citizen VC: Part 2," May 2016.
- "General Solicitation Under Rule 506(b) After Citizen VC: Part 1," May 2016.
- "New Regulation A: The Next Big Thing in Capital Formation, or Just an A+ for Effort?" Trenam Legal Update, Author, June 2015.
- Alternatives to Registration Chart, The Corporate Counsel (March/April 2015), May 1, 2015, co-authored with Stanley Keller of Locke Lord, LLP and Jean E. Harris of Greenberg Traurig, LLP.
- Alternatives to Registration Chart, The Corporate Counsel (August 2013) co-author with Stanley Keller of Edwards Wildman Palmer LLP and Jean E. Harris of Greenberg Traurig, LLP.
- "Dawn of a Brave New World! Advertising in private offerings under new SEC Rule 506(c), but no bad actors," August 2013.
- "SEC Issues Final Rules to Implement Changes in Accredited Investor Definition," Author, Trenam Kemker Legal Update (March 2012), co-authored with Diana Hayes.
- "JOBS Act Update - SEC Proposed Rules for 'Private Offerings' with Advertising Draw Fire" , Trenam Kemker E-Mail Legal Update (October 2012).
- "The JOBS Act: Sure, It's a Catchy Name, But Will It Boost Capital Formation and Create New Jobs?" Trenam Kemker Legal Update (June 2012), co-authored with Diana Hayes and Gary Teblum
- “Who Wants to be a Millionaire? Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Provisions,” Continuing Legal Education Program, Association of Corporate Secretaries and Corporate Governance Professionals (Southeastern Chapter), Tampa, October 21, 2010
- "Sarbanes-Oxley: How it Affects Small Business - Public and Private," Chapter in Volume One of The Practitioner's Guide to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, Editors, John Huber, Stanley Keller, Vasiliki B. Tsaganos and Jonathan Wolfman, Section of Business Law, American Bar Association (2005).
- “The Special Knowledge Expert in Corporate and Securities Litigation – Not following conventional wisdom may produce superior results,” The Practical Litigator 30, Vol. 14, No. 5, co-author with Quinton F. Seamons and John E. Johnson, September 2003
Richard has spoken before numerous organizations such as CLE programs of the Business Law Section of the American Bar Association and Florida Office of Financial Regulation (Division of Securities), the Securities Experts Roundtable, Inc. and the Association of Corporate Secretaries and Corporate Governance Professionals. Recent presentations include:
- Strafford Publications Webinar, "Redefining General Solicitation for Securities Offerings in the Internet and Social Media Age", Speaker, January 2017.
- Securities Experts Roundtable, Continuing Professional Education Program, "Tutorials: Authoring an Expert Report and Transitioning Expert Practice as You Age," co-authored and co-presented with William J. Murphy and Gordon Yale, August 2015.
- "Update: Crowdfunding and Federal Private Offering Exemptions," 2015 Annual GSS CPE Seminar, (guest speaker) June 2015.
- Securities Experts Roundtable, Continuing Professional Education Program, “Brave New World of Rule 506(c): “Private” Offerings with General Solicitation.”
- Securities Experts Roundtable, Continuing Professional Education Program, "Tricks, Traps, Tips and Triumphs: SER members share their experiences," co-authored and co-presented with Bruce Foerster and Gordon Yale, August 2014.
- Florida Office of Financial Regulation (Division of Securities), Continuing Professional Education Program, “Introduction to Selected Exemptions from the Securities Registration Requirements of Federal and Florida Securities Law,” including JOBS Act revised Rule 506 and crowdfunding.
- Securities Experts Roundtable, Continuing Professional Education Program, “Fiduciary & Regulatory Updates for 1934 Act Broker-Dealers.”
- Florida Federal Contractors Association, educational program, “Preparing for the Exit: A Look at the State of M&A in the Middle-Market Defense and Government Sector,” Government Contractor M&A Target “Top Ten” Recommendations
University of Pennsylvania Law School (J.D., cum laude), 1970
Hamilton College (A.B., cum laude), 1967