Cbus Super CEO resigns

David Atkin Cbus Super CEO David Atkin will depart in mid-2020 after over 12 years at its helm. During this time Cbus Super has grown from $12 billion to $56.5 billion in funds under management.

Cbus Super chair Steve Bracks said: “David has been CEO of Cbus for over a third of its existence and over that time the fund has become an industry leader and a sophisticated global investor.”

“While we are obviously very disappointed to see David move on, we congratulate him for his achievements and his dedicated service to the men and women of the building and construction industry.”

Atkin is considered an “elder statesperson of the responsible investment community,” Bracks noted. Atkin served as Australian asset owner representative on the PRI Board (Principles of Responsible Investment) from 2009-2015. He is also currently an alternate Director on the Australian Council of Superannuation Investors (ACSI).

“His thoughtful approach and long-term vision on sustainability has contributed in no small way to the current momentum on climate related investment,” Bracks said. “Under David’s leadership, Cbus has been recognised as a leader on Integrated Reporting in Australia and abroad.”

Atkin said he was “immensely proud of what Cbus had achieved over the last twelve years and after reflecting with family over summer had decided it was time to explore other opportunities.

He will remain as Cbus CEO while an extensive executive search is undertaken, which is expected to be finalised by mid-2020.

MLC Life Insurance CEO resigns

David Hackett

MLC Life Insurance has announced the resignation of David Hackett as CEO and managing director.

The MLC board said: “The board appreciates David’s strong commitment and contribution to MLC Life Insurance. This has included leading, as the first CEO, its establishment as a standalone life insurer while separating from the National Australia Bank and joining the Nippon Life Insurance Group.”

Sean McCormack, chief of group and retail partners, will serve as acting CEO and managing director until a successor is appointed.

The board has commenced a global search and will also consider strong internal candidates.

Westpac announces new chairman

Westpac Group has announced the appointment of John McFarlane to the Westpac board as non-executive director and chairman-elect, succeeding Lindsay Maxsted on 2 April 2020.

McFarlane will commence his role in February, subject to regulatory approvals.

Maxsted said: “Mr McFarlane is not only well known in Australia and New Zealand, but is a respected banking leader globally who brings to our organisation more than 44 years’ experience in financial services. He has worked across retail and wholesale banking and markets, as well as in life and general insurance, and has board and public service experience in this and other fields.”

McFarlane said his initial focus will be on resolving the company’s current issues and positioning it as quickly as possible for long-term success.

Iress appoints Trudy Vonhoff and Michael Dwyer as directors

Iress has announced the appointment of Trudy Vonhoff and Michael Dwyer as non-executive directors, effective from 1 February 2020.

With over 20 years’ experience in retail banking, financial markets and investment, Vonhoff is currently a director of Credit Corp Group and Cuscal Limited. Past directorships include AMP Bank, Ruralco Holdings Limited, Tennis NSW and the Westpac Staff Superannuation Fund. For 13 years she held senior executive roles at Westpac and AMP across retail banking, finance, risk, technology & operations, and agribusiness.

Dwyer brings over 35 years’ experience in superannuation and investment, including 14 years as CEO of First State Super. He is currently a director of TCorp (New South Wales Treasury Corporation), WSC Group, the Global Advisory Council of Tobacco Free Portfolios and the Sydney Financial Forum. Since 1998 he has also been a director and subsequently chair of Australia for UNHCR, the private sector partner of the UN Refugee Agency. He is a life member of ASFA and the Fund Executives Association.

Iress chair Tony D’Aloisio said: “Both Trudy and Michael have impressive experience in executive and governance roles and we look forward to them joining the Iress board of directors.”

HESTA announces new chief risk and compliance officer

Andrew MajorHESTA has appointed Andrew Major to the newly created role of chief risk and compliance officer, joining the fund’s executive team.

Major was previously the general manager – unlisted assets where he led a team responsible for managing the fund’s investments in the infrastructure, private equity, property and other alternative investment strategies, including Impact Investments.

HESTA CEO Debby Blakey said the fund was fortunate to have such a strong internal candidate to lead the risk and compliance function at the $53 billion industry super fund.

Major is currently the chair of the Australian Investment Council and also recently served as a director of the Climate Bonds Standards Board and as co-chair of the UN PRI Infrastructure Advisory Committee.

Local Government Super appoints third independent director

Claudia BelsLocal Government Super (LGS) has announced the appointment of Claudia Bels to the LGS board. Bels is the third independent non-executive director to join as part of recent changes to broaden the diversity and strengthen specific skills on the LGS board. She joins recently appointed independent chair, Kyle Loades, independent director, Sandi Orleow, and new chief executive officer, Phil Stockwell.

Bels is an experienced non-executive director and committee chair across a wide variety of member-based, private and government organisations including CBHS Corporate Health, Australia and New Zealand Recycling Platform, Australian Settlements Limited, Australian Physiotherapy Council and the NSW Health Care Complaints Commission.

LGS chair Kyle Loades said: “Claudia brings to the board an impressive track record in law, finance and risk management as well as broad international commercial expertise.”

MLC Wealth appoints chief technology and operations officer

MLC Wealth has announced the appointment of Darren McKenzie as chief technology and operations officer, effective March 2020.

McKenzie joins MLC from RSA Insurance, where he was chief operating officer UK and International for four years.

CEO of MLC Wealth, Geoff Lloyd, said McKenzie’s appointment further adds to the diversity of skills and experience on the MLC Wealth leadership team. McKenzie will report to both NAB Group chief technology and operations officer, Patrick Wright, and Lloyd in the period until MLC’s legal separation from NAB.

“As we continue to prepare for separation, Darren’s deep experience across technology and operations will enable us to deliver strong capability to support the business. We look forward to him joining us in March,” Lloyd said.

The announcement comes after an extensive internal and external search and follows a series of executive appointments to the MLC Wealth leadership team. These include Andrew Morgan (chief commercial services officer and chief financial officer), Anthony Lane (chief operating officer), Mark Baxter (chief risk officer), Kylie Smith (chief communications, digital & marketing officer), Shenaz Waples (previously Khan) (chief human resources officer), Garry Mulcahy (asset management), Tim Steele (retirement & investment solutions), and Darren Stevens (platforms).

First Super appoints new co-chair

Regional director for Herman Miller Australia Mike Radda has been appointed co-chair of First Super from 1 January 2020, replacing Lisa Marty who is stepping down from the board  mid 2020 after seven years of service as a trustee, and co-chair from 2016.

First Super CEO Bill Watson said: “Lisa’s experience and commitment to the sector and First Super members will be missed by the board and trustee office.”

Radda is a veteran of the furnishing trades, a former CEO of the Furnishing Industry Association of Australia as well as previously serving as CEO of Interlink Commercial Furniture and UCI. He brings over ten years’ experience as a director of superannuation funds and is a long-term employer-nominated trustee of First Super.

MetLife appoints new chief of staff and external affairs

Wendy TseMetLife Australia has announced the appointment of Wendy Tse as chief of staff and external affairs, joining the business in early April 2020.

She joins MetLife from KPMG, where she has been a director in the superannuation advisory team for the last two years.

Richard Nunn, MetLife Australia CEO says Tse will play an important role in evolving their life insurance business.

Prior to KPMG, she was the general manager of consulting at SuperRatings.

New chair for Prime Super

Nigel AlexanderPrime Super has appointed new chair Nigel Alexander to lead the fund into its next growth phase.

Alexander has wide experience as a board chair across a range of industries including agribusiness, not-for-profit advocacy and member-owned mutual organisations. He has been chair of both UnitingCare Queensland and the Royal Flying Doctor Service Foundation as well as chair of RACQ Limited and RACQ Insurance, CEO and executive chair of the North Australian Pastoral Company and director of both AgForce and the Cattle Council of Australia.

His appointment follows the retirement of Alan Bowman, after 19 years of service as a director, the last nine years as chairman.

legalsuper appoints new chief investment officer

Norman Zhanglegalsuper has announced that Norman Zhang had been appointed to the role of CIO, commencing 2 March 2020.

Zhang has more than 11 years of financial services experience across consulting with Ernst & Young, investment consulting with Frontier Advisors and most recently as CIO at Media Super.

Former APRA chair appointed ING chair

ING Australia has announced the appointment of Dr John Laker AO to the position of chair of ING Australia, effective January 2020. Dr Laker has served on the ING board since January 2019.

Dr Laker’s career in finance spans more than 45 years and includes roles in the Commonwealth Treasury, the International Monetary Fund (Washington), the Reserve Bank of Australia (Assistant Governor Financial System) and the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (Chair).

Dr Laker is currently chair of the board of the Banking and Finance Oath, Deputy Chancellor of the University of Technology Sydney, member of the Experts Panel of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Director of Cancer Council NSW and Cancer Council Australia. He was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2008.