William J. Barr, Chairman of the Board of the Smart Card Forum (SCF), a multi-industry organization working to accelerate the widespread acceptance of smart card technology, announced Monday that Donna Farmer has been named as the Forum’s first President and CEO. Ms. Farmer is a lawyer with extensive experience in business, technology, finance and public policy.
“Donna Farmer has a unique blend of leadership qualities that make her a perfect fit with the Smart Card Forum,” says Barr. “Experience in technology. A strong management background. Skill at bringing people together. An ability to define a strategic direction. These are key attributes that will play an important role in the articulation and achievement of the Forum’s vision.”
“Creating this new office of President and CEO is a welcome necessity as it reflects the unrelenting progress of smart card technology and the large size of our membership,” adds Barr. “It’s a bigger job for a bigger organization that represents a much bigger technology.”
As part of the move, Barr relinquishes the title of President of the Forum and retains the title of Chairman of the Board of Directors. Farmer will work closely with the Board to implement the Forum’s strategic plan and to recruit new members. She will assume the role of primary spokesperson for the organization. As such, Farmer will be the leading public source of information on the Smart Card Forum.
“These are exciting times for smart card technology,” says Farmer. “The Forum’s 200 members are at the leading edge of its evolution from emergence to commercialization. We’re seeing new pilots, new implementations, new applications, and a new level of consumer interest that together constitute a rising tide of marketplace acceptance. I look forward to applying my experience to the task of ensuring the Forum’s work continues to lead smart card technology forward.”
Farmer joins the Forum from CertCo, where she served as Vice President of Strategic Business Development. There, she was responsible for creating the strategic relationships that drive CertCo’s mission of enabling banks and other trust institutions with revenue-bearing public key infrastructure capability.
At CertCo, Farmer negotiated technology partner agreements and managed relationships with a number of technology partners, including smart card, directory, and application vendors.
During 1996 and 1997, Farmer was counsel to the Science Committee in the U.S. House of Representatives where she was responsible for all information technology-related issues. Working with the Subcommittee on Technology, she directed hearings and wrote legislation concerning U.S. encryption policies, as well as other regulatory matters affecting the electronic marketplace.
From 1993-95, Farmer was a principal in a Washington D.C.-based equity investment firm. She was responsible for funding companies involved in data interoperability and Internet services. This venture capital work involved identifying opportunities, proceeding with due diligence, helping select management, preparing portfolio firms for the public market, and matching them with strategic partners.
Farmer previously worked as Business Technology Advisor for Analytic Services Corp., a U.S. government-affiliated firm. Earlier in her career, she practiced law as a litigator in New York City.
Farmer has a J.D. from New York Law and a B.A. from Columbia University. She is a member of the New York and Washington, D.C. bars. She has served as editorial advisor for the MIT Press book series on the future of information technologies, and has been a frequent speaker at conferences on topics such as privacy, encryption and computer security.
The Smart Card Forum ([www.smartcardforum.org]) is a non-profit, multi-industry organization of 200 members working to accelerate the widespread acceptance of multiple application smart card technology by bringing together, in an open forum, leading users and technologists from both the public and private sectors.