FinTech Forum Silicon Valley

September 16, 2016

Financial Technology, or FinTech, refers to a spectrum of technology innovations and startups that demonstrate disruptive potential in applications, processes, products, or business models in the financial industry.  As FinTech continues to develop and evolve, providing solutions to more facets of the financial industry, it faces a more traditional problem: balancing consumer protection with innovation. Unlike other areas of technology, FinTech requires a certain degree of fiduciary duty to their users – bringing questions of regulation, security, and compliance to the forefront.

GW’s Center for Law, Economics and Finance is holding the FinTech Forum Silicon Valley at Plug and Play in Sunnyvale, California, to bring together industry leaders, academic experts, government regulators, and legal scholars in the heartland of innovation to discuss the ideas that arise in the search for such a balance. 


This event is presented by the GW Center for Law, Economics, and Finance. More information is available at


Media interested in attending should contact Kara Tershel at 202.994.0616 or [email protected].


9 - 9:15 am: Welcoming Remarks

  • Neil Ruiz, Executive Director, GW Center for Law, Economics, and Finance

9:15 - 9:25 am: Plug and Play Overview

  • Scott Robinson, Vice President, Plug and Play Fintech

9:25 - 10 am: The Current Regulatory Framework

  • Obrea Poindexter, Partner & Co-Chair of Financial Services Practice Group, Morrison & Foerster
  • Kevin Petrasic, Head of Global Financial Institutions Advisory Practice, White & Case

10 - 10:45 am: Keynote Address - Fintech Innovation and The Regulatory Landscape

  • Bill Tai, Kiteboarding VC & Silicon Valley Angel Investor

10:45 am- 12:15 pm: Panel 1 - The Challengers of Reconciling Innovation and Regulation


  • Rachel Witkowski, The Wall Street Journal


  • Patrick Pinschmidt, Former U.S. Dept. of Treasury Official & Executive Director of Financial Stability Oversight Council
  • John Beccia, Chief Compliance Officer & General Counsel, Circle
  • Alex Acree, Managing Director & General Counsel, Fenway Summer Ventures
  • John Muller, VP, Global Payments Policy, PayPal
  • Bruce Wallace, Chief Digital Officer, Silicon Valley Bank

12:15 - 1:45 pm: Lunch Keynote Address - "How FinTech Innovation Can Help Provide Access to Credit"

  • Brian Brooks, Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary, Fannie Mae

1:45 - 3 pm: Panel 2 - Legal and Practical Problems of Security in a Fast Moving FinTech World


  • John Biggs, East Coast Editor, TechCrunch


  • Michael McGowan, Managing Director, Stroz Friedberg
  • Patrick Murck, Fellow, Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard
  • Kathryn Haun, Asst. US Attorney & Digital Currency Coordinator, U.S. Dept. Of Justice
  • Nathan Taylor, Partner, Morrison & Foerster
  • Kevin Petrasic, White & Case

3  - 4:15 pm: Panel 3 - Who is the True Lender?


  • Laura Shin, Contributor, Forbes Magazine


  • Jason Altieri, General Counsel, Lending Club
  • Conor French, General Counsel, Funding Circle
  • Oliver Ireland, Partner, Morrison & Foerster
  • Scott Wyckoff, General Counsel, CA Department of Business Oversight

4:15 - 5:30 pm: Panel 4: Who should regulate? State or Fed?


  • Heather Somerville, Technology Reporter, Thomson Reuters


  • Margaret Liu, SVP & Deputy General Counsel, Conference of State Bank Supervisors
  • Dana V. Syracuse, Counsel, Buckley Sandler
  • Joe Colangelo, Executive Director, Consumers' Research
  • Jeffrey Manns, Associate Professor of Law, GW Law

5:30 - 5:35 pm: Closing Remarks

  • Neil Ruiz, GW Center for Law, Economics and Finance



GW Law, long recognized as one of the top law schools in the country, pursues a distinctive research and learning mission that engages the leading law and policy questions of our time and provides students with an education that will position them to help change the world. Accredited by the American Bar Association and a charter member of the Association of American Law Schools, GW Law was founded in 1865 and was the first law school in the District of Columbia.

The GW Center for Law, Economics and Finance brings together diverse perspectives from the academic community, Main Street, Wall Street, and Washington to address important issues affecting the economy and financial markets.

Media Contact

Kara Tershel
[email protected]



Wednesday, September 21, 2016
8 am—5:30 pm



Plug and Play Tech Center
440 N. Wolfe Rd.
Sunnyvale, CA 94085