Dave Sapenaro, first vice president and chief operating officer at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, will oversee the Fed's payments system improvement initiatives.

In his role as payments strategy director, Sapenaro will lead the committees and payments providers involved in the faster payments program the Fed outlined in 2015.

He replaces Gordon Werkema, former chief operating officer at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, who retired last September. Sapenaro will maintain his duties at the St. Louis Fed.

“I’m honored to carry these efforts forward and excited to work closely with the many Federal Reserve and industry leaders who have generated very significant momentum toward achieving the desired outcomes,” Sapenaro said in an Aug. 24 press release. “The Federal Reserve remains committed to collaborating with stakeholders on improvements that deliver safe, ubiquitous, faster payments to American consumers and businesses.”

As payments strategy director, Sapenaro will lead the Federal Reserve’s strategies related to faster payments, payments security and stakeholder engagement. He will collaborate with the Federal Reserve’s current financial services business leaders to execute the full complement of strategies the Fed previously outlined.

“Three years ago, Dave led the development of the strategies paper and our initial plans for pursuing the desired outcomes for payment system improvement,” Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City president and chief executive officer Esther George said in the press release.

The Kansas City Fed sponsors the payments improvement initiative.

“Dave’s leadership experience in many facets of our payments responsibilities and his commitment to the work are exceptional, and I am delighted to have him lead the next phase of our improvement efforts,” George added.

During his 32-year career with the Federal Reserve, Sapenaro spent 10 years at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, holding a variety of leadership positions in payment operations, including the bank’s automated clearing house and funds transfer operations.

Sapenaro later joined the St. Louis Fed, where he spent eight years leading various initiatives in support of U.S. Treasury operations prior to assuming his current role as first vice president in January of 2006.

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