Offereins says her primary focus at Discover is developing initiatives for growth while navigating the rigorous financial, legislative, and regulatory landscape of the banking and payments industries.

The 25-year payments-industry veteran is credited with uniting three brands --Discover Network, PULSE and Diners Club International – into a global payments business.

Discover has expanded significantly in international markets under Offereins and last year announced its first major strategic alliance in India. She has also led efforts to extend credit and debit alliances in Puerto Rico, bringing popular Caribbean card brands onto her company's payments grid.

On the domestic front, Discover recently agreed to be the network behind Facebook's new gift card, one of many moves the company has made to leverage its network for Internet-only businesses, according to Offereins. She has already helped cement relationships with numerous merchant acquirers that help bring aboard the small and midsize companies driving Discover's U.S. growth.

Also named as one of American Banker Magazine's "Most Powerful Women in Finance" last year, Offereins was Discover's chief information and administrative officer prior to heading up payments services. Before joining the Riverwoods, Ill., company in 1998, she was a senior executive vice president at MBNA America Bank.

Offereins says she finds it interesting that technology is currently moving faster than regulatory changes.

"The definition of a 'card' is constantly changing, and it will likely look very different in five years," she says.

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