Visa announced on Thursday that it has appointed Ellen Richey, the company’s chief risk officer, to the positions of executive vice president and chief legal officer.
Richey will assume responsibility of legal functions, as well as oversee and maintain Visa’s compliance and audit teams. She will report to Visa CEO Charlie Scharf.
“From the start of the search, we wanted to find a candidate who offered the right balance of legal expertise and leadership skills, and with an understanding of the complexities of payments,” Scharf said. “I am pleased that the best candidate for the role of Chief Legal Officer has come from within Visa. With her extensive legal experience, proven success at Visa and thorough knowledge of our opportunities and challenges, Ellen is the right leader to help us navigate through an increasingly complex legal world.”
Until her replacement can be found, Richey will oversee both legal and risk functions. She assumes the position of chief legal officer after the departure of Josh Floum, who has returned to private practice.
Earlier in her legal career, Richey was a partner at San Francisco law firm Farella, Brown & Martel, where she specialized in corporate and real estate law. She then joined Providian Financial Corp. as vice chairman, where she oversaw the company’s compliance and audit functions, as well as legal affairs. From 2005 to 2006, Richey served as the senior vice president of enterprise risk management and executive vice president of cards services at Washington Mutual.
Richey has a bachelor’s degree in linguistics and Far Eastern languages from Harvard University, as well as a juris doctorate from Stanford Law School.