The SEC continues to assert its regulatory authority by probing hedge fund managers and other registered investment advisers to private funds. See “Effects of Expanding SEC Investment Adviser Examinations” (Mar. 24, 2016). Managers must prepare to withstand this increased scrutiny and respond accordingly. To assist hedge fund managers in this preparation, Brian T. Davis and Dimitri G. Mastrocola, partners at international recruiting firm Major, Lindsey & Africa, hosted a panel discussion featuring Ropes & Gray partners Eva Carman, Sarah Davidoff and Joel Wattenbarger. This article, the first in a two-part series, summarizes the panel’s insights on effectively navigating the SEC examination process. The second article will highlight key areas of SEC focus, including requests for email; conflicts of interest; allocation of fees, expenses and investment opportunities; valuation; cybersecurity; broker-dealer registration; and attorney-client privilege. For additional insight from Carman and Wattenbarger, see “Insights Gleaned From Successfully Navigating Presence Examinations With Hedge Fund Manager Clients” (Mar. 7, 2013). For insight from Davidoff, see “The Impact on Private Fund Managers of Final Regulations Under the Volcker Rule” (Mar. 13, 2014).