F. Christopher Calabia

Senior Advisor

New York City

F. Christopher Calabia joins AIR with three decades of experience in financial regulation. He is enthusiastic about AIR’s mission to promote the responsible use of technology for the public good.

Currently Chris is Head of Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) Programs at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Digital Currency Initiative. He leads research engagements with central banks and other stakeholders to advise policymakers on the potential risks and opportunities associated with the launch of this new digital asset.

In that vein, Chris began his career as a central banker and regulator himself at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in 1993. Over the next 24 years he held a variety of roles, including serving as the senior supervisor for one of the largest U.S. banks and later as the Senior Vice President of the Regional, Community, Foreign Institution, and Consumer Compliance Function, leading 72 staff and overseeing 200 U.S. and foreign banks. From 2021-2022, Chris was the Chief Executive of the Dubai Financial Services Authority, the independent regulator of the Dubai International Financial Centre.

In between those assignments, Chris led the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s work on supervisory and regulatory policy from 2017 to 2021, promoting financial inclusion in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. Other international experiences include a secondment to the independent secretariat of the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision at the Bank for International Settlements in Switzerland (2003-2005) and temporary assignments with the International Monetary Fund, where he advised regulators in the United Kingdom (2016) and Kazakhstan (2023) on their compliance with global regulatory standards.

Chris is a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist, a graduate of the Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy (M.A.L.D.), and a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Virginia (B.A.). He founded FC Calabia Solutions, LLC, to help build a future for finance that is sustainable, resilient, and inclusive. Chris lives in New York City with his wife and family.