Mobile Commerce

Werkema Tapped by Fed to Direct Payment System Improvements

Following the publication of the paper “Strategies for Improving the U.S. Payment System,” the U.S. Federal Reserve has tapped Gordon Werkema as payments strategy director, charged with implementing the changes recommended in the paper.

Werkema is currently the first vice president and COO of Chicago’s Federal Reserve Bank. He also serves as the product director for the Federal Reserve System’s National Customer Relations and Support Office, according to a release announcing the appointment.

He had previously been part of the executive team that helped develop the strategies paper. His Federal Reserve career stretches back 34 years, beginning first in San Francisco as an executive vice president, progressing to Chicago as COO, overseeing tech and corporate development there, and as product director he has spearheaded electronic access product development and services.

Werkema holds an undergraduate degree in Political Science and Economics from Seattle Pacific University and also a master’s degree with honors from The Johns Hopkins University.

Announced in January of this year, when the Fed released the payment systems improvement roadmap, the task force is charged with promoting improvement in speed, efficiency and cross-border capabilities.

Esther George, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and senior sponsor of the payments improvement strategies for the Federal Reserve System, said in a statement that “with his extensive background in payments and his leadership of the Federal Reserve’s customer relationship management office for the past 15 years, Gordon was the clear choice to lead these payment system improvement efforts, which center on stakeholder collaboration.”

Citing the need for “a secure, faster, more efficient U.S. payment system,” Werkema said in a release that “this collaboration begins in earnest next week with the convening of the faster and secure payments task force efforts that are designed to deliver real benefits to end users of the payment system.”

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