AIR Taps Joe Adler to Lead Content, Adds Key Global Capabilities

Fair finance nonprofit doubles team, expands funding to advance mission

AIR, the Alliance for Innovative Regulation, announced today that Joe Adler, former Washington bureau chief of American Banker, has joined the organization as director of content. The move is part of a strategic expansion that has included a doubling of AIR’s team over the past two quarters and an expansion of funding sources, fueling AIR’s mission-driven impact for global and U.S. initiatives in regulation innovation.

“Doubling our workforce is so meaningful for AIR. As we advance fair finance through responsible technology, our expanded team adds new ideas and new capabilities to content development, strategy, TechSprint management and marketing,” says Jo Ann Barefoot, AIR CEO and co-founder.

Joe Adler brings over two decades of experience as a reporter and editor. At American Banker, he specialized in government policy in the financial sector and most recently served as the Washington bureau chief. He will lead AIR’s thought leadership work and written content, including white papers and blogs.

Leading the AIR Accelerator and global TechSprint strategy, Nick Cook has served as the organization’s head of global strategy and partnerships since the fall of 2021. Nick is the former head of innovation at the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), where he created the idea of “regulation innovation” and is the architect of the regulator’s robust TechSprint program.

Also coming from the FCA is Shelley Cross, a seasoned TechSprint leader who joins AIR as a director to further expand its global reach and focus on igniting technology innovation throughout the financial system. Shelley specifically brings expertise in delivering innovative solutions for vulnerable consumers through her prior work and collaboration with the global regtech ecosystem.

Rushka Tcholakova joins AIR as a project manager focused on producing TechSprints as well as building operational infrastructure. Rushka has a history of work in financial inclusion with the New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence, United Way of the Greater Capital Region and United Way of Greater Houston.

AIR also welcomes its new head of marketing and communications, Joseph Schember. Joseph has over a decade of experience in marketing from his previous roles at Ricoh USA, Inc., Mohawk Fine Papers and Canon USA, Inc. He leads marketing activities across all channels with a strategic focus on increasing AIR’s brand awareness, expanding its reach and optimizing communications for the greatest impact.

“AIR’s growth focuses on deepening our bench of regulatory and technological expertise, while reinforcing our global footprint,” says David Ehrich, AIR co-founder and executive director. “This has only been possible with the expansion of our funding sources, which now include U.S. federal government grants, major philanthropic organizations, corporate foundations and the regulators themselves,” he continues.

Joe Adler

Director of content

Nick Cook

Head of global strategy and partnerships

Shelley Cross

Director of TechSprints

Rushka Tcholakova

Project manager

Joseph Schember

Head of marketing and communications

About AIR

AIR is a global nonprofit leveraging digital modernization to help build a financial system that serves everyone and produces widespread financial health. Founded by Jo Ann Barefoot and David Ehrich, AIR arms regulators with digital tools to counter technology risks and optimize financial services for the digital age.

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