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RBNZ: Leadership appointments in Reserve Bank’s Money Group

Two appointments to senior leadership roles in the Reserve Bank’s Money Group show the Bank’s commitment to developing and preparing for the future of physical and electronic payments, Assistant Governor Christian Hawkesby says.

Ian Woolford has been appointed the Reserve Bank’s Head of Money and Cash, and Steve Gordon will head a new Payment Services Department.

Mr Hawkesby says both new roles stem from growth and developments within the Reserve Bank’s Banking Department.

“Two major strategic projects – the Payment Systems Replacement, and the Future of Cash – have resulted in new responsibilities and considerable advancements in thinking and future direction for physical and electronic payments,” he says.

“Te Pūtea Matua, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, is the steward of the cash system and operates New Zealand’s payment settlement system. Dedicated oversight and leadership of these critical areas is needed so New Zealand can be at the leading edge of work on the future of cash – physical and digital.”

Mr Hawkesby says both leaders have proven track records for delivering large complex changes, and will bring strong thought leadership and stakeholder experience to the new roles.


Ian Woolford has worked in a variety of roles at the Reserve Bank over the last 30 years. Ian started his career in the Economics Department, and has been a Manager in the Financial Markets, Financial Stability, and Prudential areas of the Reserve Bank. Most recently he was the Manager of the Financial Policy Team in the Financial System Policy and Analysis Department where he led the work on the Review of Bank Capital. As Head of Money and Cash he is responsible for the Bank’s existing currency functions, the significant vaulting and cash distribution projects ahead, and establishing a new policy function in this area which will focus on issues like the Future of Cash and central bank digital currency.

Steve Gordon is currently Head of the Banking Department which is responsible for currency and electronic payment systems. He has also worked as head of the Currency, Property and Security Department, leading transformative, future-focussed currency projects. Prior to that, he served four years as Head of Risk Assessment and Assurance. Steve previously served as Head of Risk Business Support at the Bank of New Zealand and prior to that, has worked in information technology and financial audit roles in the commercial banking sector. As Head of Payment Services he is responsible for the leadership of the commercially-focused NZ Central Securities Depository Limited and New Zealand’s Exchange Settlement Account System.

Money Group

The ‘Money Group’ within the Reserve Bank comprises the departments that connect the full cycle of monetary policy, from policy formulation to implementation across the Reserve Bank’s balance sheet. These include the Money and Cash Department, Economics Department, the Financial Markets Department, Payment Services Department.

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