Voters not only rejected a re-election bid by incumbent governor Duff, a Finra nominee, but also that of small-firms incumbent Robert A. Muh, who was defeated by petition challenger Linde Murphy, a principal and compliance officer at M.E. Allison & Co. of San Antonio.

Murphy joins two other small-firms governors as representatives on the board. Murphy qualified to run in the election by submitting a petition with the required signatures of at least 3% of Finra’s 3,261 small-firm members.

Since the beginning of her investment career in 1999, Murphy has mainly worked for small firms. Her current firm, M.E. Allison & Co. Inc., operates a full-service broker-dealer and RIA founded in 1946. The Texas firm also provides municipalities with advisory and underwriting services.

Muh, with over four decades of experience in the financial services industry, currently serves as CEO of Sutter Securities, a 12-person broker-dealer he co-founded in San Francisco in 1992. He was elected to a three-year term on the Finra Board of Governors in 2016. Muh declined comment.

While not nominated to run for the board, Murphy said in an August 21 telephone interview that if she decides to run for re-election in 2022, when her three-year term is up, it will again be by petition.

“Members should be the ones who choose who will make it to the ballot,” she asserted.

Murphy said she seeks to be a voice for many small firms being strangled by expensive red tape. “I’ve seen so many small firms go out of business due to overwhelming regulations and skyrocketing compliance costs,” she said. “Our expenses have gone up so much and margins shrink because it takes so many more people to do their jobs than it has in the past.”

At the top of her to-do list is advocating for legislative relief from Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) rules.

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, as amended, directs the PCAOB to establish, by rule, auditing and related professional practice standards for registered public accounting firms to follow in preparing audit reports for public companies and other issuers, as well as broker-dealers.

“We have got to get small firms relief from the PCAOB,” she said. “I am working alongside other members to get this across the finish line on (Capitol) Hill. The PCAOB was a blanket requirement intended to examine large firms with more complex issues.”