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William Gorog, 76; Helped Create High-Tech Information Systems

In the Ford administration he was deputy director of the President's Economic Policy Board and executive director of the Council on International Economic Policy.

July 21, 2002|From the Washington Post

William F. Gorog, a technology entrepreneur who played key roles in the development of the LexisNexis computerized information and telephone credit card authorization systems, died of lung cancer July 14 at a hospital in Falls Church, Va. He was 76.

Gorog was chairman of InteliData Technologies Corp., which pioneered electronic banking and bill-paying systems.

He founded the company in 1990 as US Order, and it was sold in 1994 to Visa International. Gorog retained the title of chairman.

He was also a White House economic advisor during the Ford administration, and a former president of Magazine Publishers of America.

Gorog, a resident of McLean, Va., was born in Warren, Ohio. He served in the Army during World War II, and in 1949 graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

After Army service during the Korean War, he settled in the Washington area and was co-founder of Data Corp., a high-technology research and development company.

He was the company's chairman and chief executive, and in the 1960s he presided over the development of a full-text retrieval system for the massive amounts of data being stored in computer systems at that time.

This eventually became the LexisNexis computerized law and news information systems now used by thousands of law firms, courts, federal agencies and businesses across the United States.

The company also worked with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and developed the photo-optics systems for the Apollo moon missions.

The firm merged in 1969 with Mead Corp., but Gorog remained chairman of the Data Corp. subsidiary.

He joined the Ford administration in 1975 as deputy director of the President's Economic Policy Board.

In 1976, he became executive director of the Council on International Economic Policy.

When President Ford left office in 1977, Gorog established a trading company that specialized in the export of U.S. computer products to the Far East.

From 1983 to 1987, he was president of Magazine Publishers of America, whose members included such organizations as Time Inc., Conde Nast and Hearst.

In 1987, Gorog became chairman and chief executive of Arbor International, a company that specialized in financing energy, high-technology and real estate ventures.

In this role, he was instrumental in the financing and marketing of the VeriFone credit card authorization system, and was a director of VeriFone.

While at Arbor International, he began working on the electronic banking and bill-paying operation that became InteliData Technologies.

In 1996, Gorog was named Nasdaq's entrepreneur of the year.

He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Gretchen Meister Gorog; six children, Christopher, Jonathan, Peter, Robin, Jennifer Gorog Nichols and Lesley Gorog Harris; and 21 grandchildren.

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