Thomas C. Priore
Chief Executive Officer
Thomas Priore has served as Executive Chairman and founding member of Priority since August 2005 and recently assumed the role of Chief Executive Officer in December of 2018. Under Mr. Priore’s strategic direction, Priority has emerged from a start-up organization to become the 13th largest merchant acquirer in the US and a leading provider of commercial payment solutions to major global institutions. Prior to dedicating his full time to Priority, he founded ICP Capital, a boutique investment banking enterprise that became a market leader in structured finance reaching over $20 billion in assets under management. From 1999 until 2003, Mr. Priore was with Guggenheim Securities where he founded the Structured Finance Trading and Origination business and managed its Fixed Income Sales and Trading division. Previously, Mr. Priore spent eight years in PaineWebber’s Fixed Income Sales and Trading department, rising to Vice President. Mr. Priore is a graduate of Harvard University and holds an MBA from Columbia University. Thomas Priore is the brother of John Priore, Priority’s Vice Chairman.
John V. Priore
John Priore is the co-founder of Priority and served as Chief Executive Officer of Priority from August 2005 until assuming the role of Vice Chairman of the Board in December of 2018. He has over twenty-five years of experience in the payments industry. Prior to founding Priority, he was the Executive Vice President of Financial Systems at Ingenico, and also served in a variety of positions at other firms, including NOVA, First Data and American Express. Mr. Priore is a member of the Technology Association of Georgia (TAG), a legacy member of the Alpharetta Technology Commission and currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Electronic Transactions Association. His commitment to the industry has helped propel Priority to be a leader in payments technology. John Priore is the brother of Thomas Priore, Priority’s Chief Executive Officer and Executive Chairman.
Michael K. Passilla
Michael K. Passilla has served as a director of Priority since June 4, 2019. Mr. Passilla served as Vice Chairman for JP Morgan Chase & Company from July 2016 until his retirement in June 2018, after serving as Chief Executive Officer of Chase Merchant Services from May 2013 to June 2016. He previously served as Chief Executive Officer of Evalon - US Bank, Inc. from August 2010 to April 2013, after serving as Executive Vice President of Global Business Development since August 2007. Mr. Passilla received a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Notre Dame in 1989 and an MBA from Northwestern University in 1995.
Christina (Chris) Favilla is an experienced independent board member responsible for guiding and supporting the strategic direction of public and private companies in the financial services sector. She is a seasoned banker with a proven track record of growing business platforms in a volatile regulatory environment. In several companies, Chris has successfully led large strategic shifts to meet the demanding needs of today’s financial markets. She served as Chief Operating Officer for GE Capital America from February 2012 to June 2017, with direct responsibility for $100 billion in served assets across Canada, Mexico, and the United States. She led a diverse team of 2500 people across 33 locations and interacted with over 20,000 vendors. She previously served as the President of Discover Bank from 2006 to 2012. With both an IT and Operational background she has the ability to quickly assess and implement the necessary changes in anticipation of positive outcomes. Chris is a graduate of Marymount College for International Finance and received her MBA from Fordham University.
Stephen W. Hipp
Stephen W. Hipp recently retired from Goldman Sachs & Company where he served as Managing Director and Co-Head of the Goldman Sachs Specialty Lending Group from March 2004 until September 2020. Prior to joining Goldman Sachs, Mr. Hipp previously served as Senior Vice President of Underwriting and Portfolio Management of GE Capital’s Media and Telecommunications Finance Group from March 1999 until March 2004. He served as a Senior Associate in the leveraged lending group of Creditanstalt from 1997-1999. Mr. Hipp began his career as an auditor for Ernst & Young, LLP in 1990 transitioning to the Restructuring and Reorganizations Advisory Group through 1997. He received a Bachelor of Economics from Emory University and completed Post-Baccalaureate course work in Accounting from Georgia State University. Mr. Hipp has served on the Boards of private companies and a charitable organization. He maintained his license as a Certified Public Accountant from July 1992-December 1999.
Marietta Davis is an accomplished technology sales executive and currently serves as IBM’s Vice President and Managing Director for the global Accenture relationship. She leads a worldwide team growing business in IBM Public Cloud, Red Hat Hybrid Cloud and Artificial Intelligence solutions in collaboration with Accenture, IBM’s largest Global Service Integrator. Prior to IBM, she served as Vice President of U.S. Dynamics at Microsoft. As the highest-ranking African American executive in North America and Latin America, Davis led an organization of more than 400 sales, marketing and technical experts serving Microsoft’s business customers with Dynamics ERP and CRM Solutions. While at Microsoft, Davis successfully managed and grew multiple businesses to $1B and triple digit growth milestones. She has held high impact positions at Lotus Development, Ameritech, and Tata Consulting. Her diverse leadership portfolio extends to mentoring strong leaders into key roles and acting in an advisory capacity to incubation and small startups.
Davis currently sits on the Board of The Posse Foundations, a nonprofit organization dedicated to developing leaders for the future. Posse Foundation sends talented young people from diverse backgrounds in "posses" of approximately ten students at a time to cooperating universities, with the intention that the students in each posse will support each other. In July 2017 she was selected as the first female Board Member of SharpSpring, Inc. (NASDAQ: SHSP), a hyper-growth global provider of SaaS marketing automation technologies. Davis was honored as a Spelman College “Game Changer” Hall of Fame inductee in 2015 for her impact as a technology leader. She is a sought after speaker on leadership topics with appearances at leading colleges and universities and professional organizations, including a keynote address at the 2015 Iowa Women Lead Change conference. A graduate of Bradley University, she also holds an MBA from Loyola University and executive certificates from the Harvard Business School. Joining Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., as a legacy member while at Bradley, she continues to support the organization through mentorship and community activism. A published author, Davis has written for the Huffington Post and Thrive Global.