Milken Institute Launches Fintech Advisory Committee

The Milken Institute has officially launched their Fintech Advisory Committee – a group that was previously revealed during Milken’s annual conference in Los Angeles.

Jackson Mueller, head of the Fintech program at Milken, said that the cost of financial intermediation has largely remained unchanged for 100 years, meaning efficiency gains have not been passed down to the customer.

“The Advisory Committee will play an important role in helping lawmakers, regulators, businesses, and consumers understand how, and to what extent, advanced technologies can not only help improve the financial services system but also better serve consumers and promote financial inclusion,” Mueller stated.

This past May, Milken announced that Tom Curry, currently a partner at the law firm of Nutter and former Comptroller of the Currency, would become Chair of the Fintech committee. Curry rose in the ranks of Fintech prominence when he proposed a Fintech charter for non-traditional financial firms to gain a federal regulatory path. To this day, the charter remains in limbo largely due to the efforts of traditional banks to stifle competition. The Fintech Advisory Committee is expected to promote access to capital, financial inclusion, and enable greater transparency and more efficient compliance in a fast digitizing financial services world.

Milken has now announced the first members of the Fintech Advisory Committee who will serve as thought partners and provide guidance on independent research examining the role and value of Fintech in the financial ecosystem. The Committee will also seek responsible policy and regulatory regimes that balance financial innovation and consumer protection.

The two main goals of the Fintech Advisory Committee are;

1) informing lawmakers and regulators in the U.S. and abroad on approaches to innovations within the financial services sector and;

2) seeking to change the current focus beyond the technology platforms employ to how startups and incumbents are leveraging that technology to address financial inclusion, access to capital, transparency, and compliance.

Curry said that banking and finance are not static businesses and must be allowed to evolve.

“The ability to adapt to meet the changing needs of customers and the marketplace is as critical today as it was 50 or 100 years ago,” stated Curry. “Simultaneously, we must also be able to responsibly innovate in order to take advantage of the large wave of progress quickly coming our way.”

Michael Klowden, CEO of the Milken Institute, said that Fintech is changing the face of financial services. The Committee will help policymakers better understand the challenges and benefits of Fintech that can improve access to capital, financial inclusion, transparency and compliance.

The Milken Institute said it is engaged in several Fintech-focused programs this year, including a partnership with FinRegLab to explore the value of cash flow data in the credit underwriting process for small businesses seeking capital.

Inaugural members of the Milken Institute Fintech Advisory Committee include

  • Tom Curry (Chair), 30th Comptroller of the Currency, partner, Nutter
  • Melissa Koide (Vice Chair), Senior Advisor, Milken Institute; CEO, FinRegLab and former Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Consumer Policy
  • Steve Antonakes, Executive Vice President, Enterprise Risk Management, Eastern Bank
  • Jo Ann Barefoot, Chief Executive Officer, Barefoot Innovation Group; Co-founder, Hummingbird RegTech
  • Margaret Hartigan, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Marstone
  • Karen Mills, Senior Fellow, Harvard Business School
  • Kathryn Petralia, Co-founder and President, Kabbage
  • Thomas Philippon, Professor of Finance, New York University Stern School of Business
  • Colin Walsh, Chief Executive Officer, Varo Money.


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