Ripple Labs, the global leader in distributed payments technology and supporters of the Ripple protocol, today announced that it has named Michael S. Barr, former official at the U.S. Department of the Treasury and a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress and at the Brookings Institution, as an advisor to the company.
"I'm excited to be joining the Advisory Board of Ripple Labs," said Barr. "Our global payments system is badly outdated. I think innovation in payments can help make the financial system safer, reduce cost, and improve access and efficiency for consumers and businesses alike."
Barr joins a number of Ripple Labs advisors with government or financial sector experience, including former National Economic Council Director Gene Sperling, former State Department official Anja Manuel, and former CEO of The Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC) Donald Donahue.
Barr is the Roy F. and Jean Humphrey Proffitt Professor of Law at the University of Michigan Law School, Professor of Public Policy at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, Faculty Director of the Center on Finance, Law and Policy, and a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress and at the Brookings Institution.
Under President Obama, he served as the U.S. Department of the Treasury's Assistant Secretary for Financial Institutions, and was a key architect of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010.
Under President Clinton, Barr served as Special Assistant to the Treasury Secretary, as Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Community Development Policy, as Special Advisor to President Clinton, as Special Advisor and Counselor on the Policy Planning Staff at the State Department.
Previously, Barr served as a law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter, and to Judge Pierre Leval, then of the Southern District of New York.
Barr currently serves on a number of private sector, government, and nonprofit advisory boards, including Lending Club, ideas42, Financial Solutions Lab, the FDIC Committee on Economic Inclusion, the Washington Center for Equitable Growth, and the U.S. Financial Diaries Project. He is also a fellow at the Filene Research Institute.
Barr received his J.D. from Yale Law School, an M. Phil in International Relations from Magdalen College, Oxford University, as a Rhodes Scholar, and his B.A., summa cum laude, with Honors in History, from Yale University.
"I am excited to welcome Michael to the Ripple Labs team," said Ripple Labs CEO and co-founder Chris Larsen. "He has spent his entire career in pursuit of a more equitable and efficient financial system -- within government, as an academic, and with many of today's leading financial innovators. We will lean on his insights and expertise as we continue to build Ripple into a critical piece of the world's financial technology infrastructure."