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BrightLights was founded with one key mission: protect individuals from fraud and dishonest business practices in finance.
BrightLights is a consulting company dedicated to providing professional athletes an understanding of their finances to decrease the risk of fraud and dishonest practices by the individuals entrusted with their investments and money.
BrightLights' Founder, David Byrne, spent over a decade working as a financial advisor and a financial regulator. With this experience on both sides of the aisle, it became clear that money was king and individuals were not adequately protected.
Professional athletes are essentially their own corporation with agents, financial advisors, business managers, lawyers, accountants, friends and family, corporate sponsors, contracts, public relations, and social media - but where is their compliance department?
Who is providing checks and balances when the majority of athletes' money is controlled by others?
Being a lifelong sports fan, David Byrne knows the positive impact professional athletes have on people, communities, brands, economies, cities, and countries. Despite these clear resources athletes provide to society, we in turn fail to equip these young adults with a financial understanding and awareness of the risks and controls needed to thrive during and after life as a professional athlete.
BrightLights' mission is to stop financial fraud and other deceptive, abusive, and incompetent practices in finance.
Who We Are
BrightLights will not charge a percentage of your assets. BrightLights will charge an hourly fee so that your salary and net worth are not a determining factor in our compensation.
BrightLights will not manage or recommend investments. BrightLights will solely provide you the knowledge to understand the risks and fees of your investments.
BrightLights will work with integrity and professionalism solely in your best interest.
BrightLights will be transparent and accountable in its work and provide the utmost confidentiality required for this business.
Meet the Founder
Prior to starting BrightLights in 2017, David Byrne was a financial regulator at FINRA for seven years fighting fraud, money laundering, and other unlawful business practices in finance. David has testified at hearings, taken more depositions than he can count, and acted as both lead investigator and manager on numerous high-profile cases against Wall Street and other problematic firms and brokers.
These cases resulted in $35,072,500 in fines, six individuals suspended from the industry, two individuals barred from the industry, and three problematic firms removed from the industry. A listing of these specific cases and links to the public documents detailing the facts and circumstances can be found here.
These results do not include at least seven additional cases David was lead investigator or manager on that are still in progress as either formal cases, cases in settlement negotiations, or cases going to a hearing. The majority of these cases are likely to result in six to seven figure fines, individuals being suspended and/or barred, and one to two firms being barred from the industry for fraud.
Prior to FINRA, David worked at Merrill Lynch in Washington, D.C., for over three years on a team of six that managed approximately $600 million. David obtained his Series 7, Series 66, and Life and Health Insurance licenses during his employment and acted as a client associate and financial advisor for accounts on the team.
I worked extensively with David on a high-profile litigated disciplinary hearing. David was the examiner on the case and his investigatory expertise and efforts were instrumental in our developing the case and ultimately getting a great result at the hearing. David testified extensively in the hearing and did an excellent job. He is hard-working, smart, and savvy. He would be a great asset in investigating any type of fraud, and I highly recommend him.
During his tenure at FINRA, I had the pleasure of working with David on a variety of matters, but most extensively on a protracted and high profile investigation resulting in litigation. Very quickly I came to rely upon David, whose command of the facts was always impressive, but who also served as a unique resource on the in’s and out’s of the regulatory minutiae concerning the securities laws and rules at issue. David’s knowledge is only surpassed by his commitment; it would be difficult to find a person with more dedication both in terms of effort and in terms of passion. Most notably perhaps, David is one of those rare individuals who manages to exhibit that kind of intelligence and tenacity while still being approachable and down to earth. He is an excellent teammate and instills great confidence as a leader.
I worked with David as part of FINRA's Anti-Money Laundering Unit on high-profile cases related to AML violations. In my interactions with him, I found David to have various skills - he had a high level of analytical capability, was able to process and simplify large amounts of complex data, consistently asked probing questions during depositions, and demonstrated an ability to manage projects through to the end, achieving an effective outcome. I greatly benefited from working with and for him.
In my personal opinion, David’s attention to detail and tenacity inspire trust. He has a tremendous amount of integrity and character, and he is a pleasure to work with!