NRA hires Jim Higgins as VP of payments, financial services

National Restaurant AssociationThe National Restaurant Association announced on Monday that it has brought on Jim Higgins as the vice president of payments and financial services, where he will be responsible for developing and implementing development strategies for the trade group.

“Jim’s focus on the next generation of banking, financial services, and payment products is a valuable asset as we look for new ways to provide our members with the tools and services they need,” Phil Kafarakis, the NRA’s chief innovation and member advancement officer, said. “We are pleased to draw on his wide-ranging experience in the financial services industry.”

Higgins has nearly 40 years of experience in the financial services industry, including experience in new product and service ideation, strategic planning, development and launch. Most recently, he headed a payments consultancy and worked as the director of prepaid products for Wal-Mart. He has also held senior roles with U.S. Bank’s personal finance department, as well as Fifth Third and Vantiv.

Additionally, Higgins also worked with Discover Card and Sears Roebuck. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He will report to James Balda, the NRA’s senior vice president of innovation and business development.

The NRA, founded in 1919, represents nearly one million restaurant and food service outlets that employ more than 13 million people.

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