Pittsburgh-based PNC Financial Services Group (PNC) announced Tuesday that it has hired Steve Van Wyk to be its head of operations and technology. In this role, Van Wyk will succeed PNC Vice Chairman Thomas Whitford, who has announced that he will retire in March 2013.

Van Wyk will join PNC in January. In addition to his tech title, he will also hold the position of executive vice president of the bank and report to the executive committee. "Steve brings demonstrated leadership in building and enhancing information technology organizations," said James Rohr, PNC's chairman and CEO, in a statement.

Van Wyk had been global chief operating officer at ING since 2007. He has been a vocal proponent of cloud computing and recently brokered an agreement to build a hybrid public/private cloud computing environment with Colt and HP. 

In a video interview earlier this year, Van Wyk described how cloud computing can produce dramatic changes throughout a financial institution. "If you not only address it from a technology perspective but realize you have to change you processes, your people and the skills that you have, and that even the people that consume your services have to understand it's a different way of working – with that you start seeing the benefits that can come from the private cloud and eventually the public cloud," he said. He spoke of ING's plans to open up its APIs and an app store to compete on a different scale than it had previously.