The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) has appointed its first independent chair, Dr Michael Easson AM, effective 31 July.
Previously, the position of chair was held by one of the organisation's sector representatives, most recently former TAL chief executive, Jim Minto. ASFA's decision was based on Easson's understanding of superannuation and retirement policy and public policy, excellent governance skills, and no close alignment to any particular sector.
Easson is a former trade union official who, for most of the last two decades, has served on numerous government and corporate boards.
"Michael has tremendous governance experience, including in superannuation, and is ideally placed to lead ASFA through the next phase of its evolution," Minto said.
Easson is presently chair of Icon Water, ActewAGL, and EG Funds Management. He was a former non-executive director of State Super, Asset Super, and Chifley Financial Services.
"I see superannuation as delivering a very strong retirement policy platform for Australians. ASFA is keen to help ensure we maintain confidence in superannuation for all Australians and see that in time it helps to very effectively deliver the retirement aspirations of most retirees," Easson said.
Minto will not only retire as chair of the Board but also as a director, effective 30 July 2015.
Replacing Minto as a service provider representative will be Suzanne Holden, the chief executive of Australian Administration Services, Link Group.
ASFA chief executive, Pauline Vamos, said Holden was previously a senior executive with British Airways and Qantas where she was responsible for leading significant change programs.
"In her current role she is responsible for setting the strategic direction of the organisation and is well placed to help ASFA during a time of significant growth and change for the industry," Vamos said.