News & Press: ACFCS News

ACFCS establishes McDonald Award to recognize lifetime achievement in combating financial crime

Friday, October 20, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Brian Monroe
Share |

Annual award created in honor of Mike McDonald, leading AML expert who played key role in law enforcement's response to money laundering

Oct. 20, 2017 -- MIAMI. -- The Association of Certified Financial Crime Specialists (ACFCS), a BARBRI professional association, has established The McDonald Award, an annual honor to recognize lifetime achievement in individuals fighting financial crime. 

The award, announced at the recent ACFCS Financial Crime Conference, was created in honor of well-known and respected Anti-Money Laundering leader, Mike McDonald, who passed away in 2016. The first McDonald Award recipient will be named at the 2018 Conference.

"Our recent Financial Crime Conference was a valuable and productive gathering of the financial crime prevention community," said ACFCS Executive Director Garry Clement, CAMS, CFE, CFCS. "The participation and engagement from attendees, presenters and all other participants speaks volumes about our collective passion for preventing financial crime. It was the natural venue to introduce this award, acknowledging Mike's many contributions, and looking to the future of our field."

Over the course of his career as a Special Agent of the IRS Criminal Investigation Division, McDonald was on the front lines of combating narcotics trafficking rings in South Florida. With tremendous amounts of cartel cash washing into Miami financial institutions, McDonald helped found Operation Greenback in 1980.

Operation Greenback, the first ever multi-agency money laundering task force, would go on to recover hundreds of millions of dollars in assets from drug traffickers, compel institutions to comply with Bank Secrecy Act regulations, and serve as a template for future law enforcement collaborative efforts.

The McDonald Award will recognize a member of the financial crime profession who has devoted his or her professional life to the ongoing battle against financial crime and improving the field of financial crime prevention.

"It means a lot that ACFCS did this," said McDonald's daughter, Carrie McDonald. "He really did love his job and he knew it was an important one."

Candidates can be active or retired individuals who are financial crime practitioners, trainers, supervisors, administrators, consultants, or researchers and have made major contributions to the field.  Nominees must have at least 25 years of experience and the winner will be selected by a committee.

More information can be found at the ACFCS Homepage,


The Association of Certified Financial Crime Specialists (ACFCS), a BARBRI Professional Association, is a worldwide organization for professionals who work in diverse financial crime prevention disciplines. ACFCS awards the Certified Financial Crime Specialist (CFCS) certification to qualified candidates who pass a proctored examination. Professionals in financial crime prevention from more than 50 nations have already obtained the CFCS certification.

©2018 Association of Certified Financial Crime Specialists
All Rights Reserved