Lori Hardwick, the chief operating officer of Pershing, is leaving the firm to pursue other opportunities, according to a company spokesman.
A leading clearing firm for independent broker-dealers, Pershing told its clients about Ms. Hardwick's decision on Wednesday afternoon, according to Paul Patella, the spokesman.
He said the firm was currently assessing other candidates for the position.
Ms. Hardwick, a veteran of Envestnet Inc., said in an interview that she is committed to continue working in the financial advice industry, but has not made up her mind as to where she will eventually land.
“I'm focused on the future and looking for a way to make a difference in the advisory world,” she said. “I'm not committed to taking any positions elsewhere. I'm taking calls and they range from broker-dealers to consulting gigs and potential opportunities in London or elsewhere.”
Ms. Hardwick was one of 20 InvestmentNews Women to Watch honorees in 2016.
Last June, Ms. Hardwick told InvestmentNews in an interview that while broker-dealers are facing increased costs to comply with the Department of Labor fiduciary rule, they are also facing increased pressure on their fees from robo-advisers.
“I believe that the Department of Labor's conflict of interest rule will absolutely create an internal expense for our (client) firms to have to try to comply with,” she said.
“Regulations are causing a lot of internal pricing pressures on firms as the robo side is compressing pricing at the same time,” she said. “As those internal expenses are increasing, and while the cost of advice is coming down, mostly driven by the robos, it creates a little bit of a vise for our clients.”