The U.S.-led International Organization for Standardization (ISO) Technical Committee (TC) that develops International Standards for financial services was presented with the prestigious Lawrence D. Eicher Leadership Award during the 36th annual ISO General Assembly (GA) in St. Petersburg, Russia. Granted annually since 2003, the award recognizes ISO TCs and subcommittees (SCs) for outstanding work in creative and innovative standards development.
ISO President Terry Hill presented the honor to ISO TC 68, Financial Services. He highlighted the committee's recent revision of ISO 20022, Financial services - Universal financial industry message scheme, and development of ISO 17442, Financial services - Legal entity identifier, and praised its effective project management, communication, and leadership. In particular, Mr. Hill noted ISO TC 68's successful outreach to relevant stakeholders through its "meet the market" meetings aimed at finance professionals, among other activities, and said that work of this sort serves to lay the groundwork for future cooperation between finance industry representatives and ISO.
Created in 1948, ISO TC 68 oversees important standardization work in the area of financial services, including banking, securities, and other related activities. The U.S. plays a leading role in ISO TC 68, with the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) holding the committee's secretariat, which has been delegated to Accredited Standards Committee X9 (ASC X9); ASC X9 also administers the ANSI-accredited U.S. Technical Advisory Group (TAG) to ISO TC 68 and its SCs. Karla McKenna of Citigroup currently serves as the TC's chair. Cynthia Fuller, executive director of ASXC X9 and secretary of ISO TC 68, and Ms. McKenna were on hand at the 2013 GA to receive the honor.
"In financial services, standards exist to support our business processes, to make business more efficient, predictable, and sustainable," Ms. McKenna said. "We develop and use standards to mitigate business and operational risks, to improve efficiency and drive out cost, since standards reduce transaction errors, failures, and fraud. Standards lessen or eliminate the financial consequences of not having secure, complete, and clear information needed to complete financial transactions."
The ISO Council established the Lawrence D. Eicher Leadership Award in 2002 as a tribute to ISO's late Secretary-General, who served from 1986 to 2002.
The 2013 Eicher Award marks the fifth time that the honor has gone to a U.S.-led TC. In 2012 the Eicher Award was presented to another U.S.-led committee, ISO TC 242, at that year's ISO GA in San Diego [see related story]. ANSI holds the secretariat to ISO TC 242 in partnership with the Brazilian member body to ISO, the Associação Brasileira de Normas Técnicas (ABNT).
More information about the work of ISO TC 68 can be found on the committee's webpage.