Helane Morrison was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. She went on to get a bachelors degree in journalism and then her law degree. After law school, Morrison clerked for several judges and then started working at a law firm in San Francisco. After only a few years with the firm, she was named as a partner. During her time there, one of her main concentrations was against corrupt traders. The cases were such a big deal that she even published a book about them. It was in the early 1990s that Morrison was asked to come on board at the SEC.
The SEC asked Helane Morrison to come and work at the San Francisco office of United States Securities and Exchange. Morrison quickly became the head of enforcement at the office and she is well known today for some of the big and, until her, untouchable executives that she helped to bring down for corruption. She is also proud of the work she did to prevent fraud from occurring to senior citizens and exposing auditors who were using corrupt tactics. It was only a few years later that Morrison was promoting to Regional Director. She is the first woman to ever receive this title.
After many years of working for the government, according to a recent Project Eve article, Morrison was ready for a change and one problem that she felt she could better fix from the private sector was the lack of females in the industry. The article explained that it is strange how there are equals ratios of men to women in colleges and universities, but there are shockingly few females in leadership positions int he financial industry. During her time at the SEC, Morrison was shocked to find out that some financial companies will have separate meetings for the men and women. This inspired her to take on the industry that she had been cleaning up for years. But now she was going to take it on from the inside.
Shortly after leaving the SEC, Helane Morrison joined Hall Capital. This investment advisory firm is the most successful and the biggest of its kind in San Francisco. The aspect of this firm that Morrison was attracted to was the fact that it is an all female run firm. Morrison was brought on as the Chief Compliance Officer.