The University of Utah’s new Stena Center for Financial Technology recently appointed Ryan Christiansen to be the first executive director and lead the organization’s ambitious goals. Christiansen is a veteran of the financial-services industry, where he has led many technology initiatives.
The Stena Center for Financial Technology launched earlier this year through a partnership with the Stena Foundation and founders Steve and Jana Smith. The center is rapidly growing many new efforts, including industry-sponsored labs, a startup incubator, venture funds and fintech-focused degrees and certificates.
Christiansen will guide these efforts while also growing the university’s and state’s reputations as leaders in the financial technology industry.
“Utah is already setting the pace for the financial and technology industries, and I look forward to working with everyone through this exciting new center to leverage and grow our strengths,” Christiansen said. “We are starting with student programs and industry-sponsored labs, and we have a lot more planned in the coming months and years. I invite everyone to learn more and get involved.”
Christiansen previously served as senior vice president of data-access partnerships at Mastercard. In this role, he led the acquisition and management of consumer-permissioned financial data. As an impassioned advocate for fintech, Christiansen also represented Mastercard in industry efforts, which included an instrumental role in the formation of the Financial Data Exchange (FDX). Christiansen is a co-founder and current working group chair of FDX.
Read the full release here.