Christopher J. Furlow

President and CEO
Texas Bankers Association

Chris Furlow is president and CEO of the Texas Bankers Association (TBA). Founded in 1885, TBA is the oldest and largest state banking association in the U.S. TBA advocates for its members in Austin and Washington, trains more than 8,000 community bankers annually, provides nationally recognized banking products and services, and invests in Texas communities through financial literacy, scholarships, and charitable activities.

Furlow’s professional career has prepared him well to meet the challenges facing Texas banks. Previously, he was president of Ridge Global, an international risk management consulting firm, where he helped clients in financial services and other sectors leverage resilience for competitive advantage.

Furlow has an extensive background in complex policy/regulatory issues in both the public and private sectors. Following the 9/11 attacks, he was named director for State Affairs in the White House Office of Homeland Security, where he served as liaison to the nation’s governors. During the historic stand-up of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, he was appointed executive director of the Homeland Security Advisory Council, where he led operations of the department’s cross-disciplinary public and private sector committees and served as a senior advisor to Secretary Tom Ridge.

Furlow brings more than 25 years of legislative and political experience to TBA’s advocacy efforts. He has served as a deputy assistant secretary of Commerce, an aide to a member of the House Ways and Means Committee, executive director of the Louisiana Republican Party, and national field director of the Republican National Committee during the historic 2000 Bush versus Gore presidential race. Today, he is a member of the Voter Education Committee of the American Bankers Association and a board member of the Coalition of Bankers Associations.

In addition to serving on the SWGSB at SMU Cox Board of Trustees, Furlow serves onthe Smith-Hutson Chair of Banking Advisory Board at Sam Houston State University.

In 2019, he was appointed to represent the private sector as a member of the Texas Cybersecurity Council. He previously served on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce National Security Task Force and Cybersecurity Leadership Council. He is a member of the Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House, London). Thought-leadership articles authored or coauthored by Furlow have been featured in Harvard Business Review, ABA Banking Journal, and International Policy Digest.