Financial Advice New Zealand has announced the appointment of former National Party MP Katrina Shanks as its new CEO.
Shanks will begin her role on the 5th June 2018 and says it’s a ‘privilege’ to step into a position that will be instrumental in creating a thriving environment for quality financial advice.
‘Katrina brings a deep understanding of the legislative process and how to influence policy development, drawn from her experience as a two-term Member of Parliament,” says Financial Advice New Zealand chair Sue Brown. “The advice industry faces new challenges, new opportunities and considerable change; Katrina brings a unique combination of experience and expertise to navigate that change.”
Aside from her experience as a Member of Parliament, Shanks has been a member of the Commerce Select Committee and spent four years as CEO of the Funeral Directors Association, where she brought significant public awareness to the association and its members. A Chartered Accountant by trade, Shanks owned her own accountancy business for seven years, after which she became the Financial Controller for the National Party.
Shanks says the new position will allow her to build public confidence and trust in New Zealand’s financial advice, and to create a unified voice for the industry.
“My focus will be based around three main pillars- advocacy, standards and promotion to the public,” says Shanks. “I would like to ensure that people continue to become members of Financial Advice New Zealand, and reinforce the belief that it can make a difference to their profession and business. We can do that through strong advocacy on issues which have been identified.”
“I would also like to start a conversation about the value of financial advice, and how it can make a difference to people’s lives,” she continues. “We will focus on standards, and on ensuring that the Quality Service Mark that’s coming into place is fit for purpose and gives New Zealanders confidence and trust that there are certain standards in place.”
Regular and transparent communication with the membership will also be a priority. There will be regular interaction with members to tackle any issues that may arise during policy development, and to discuss anything surrounding legislation, regulation and best business practice.
“We’ll always be listening to what the membership has to say, and where they think we should be going,” says Shanks. “Financial Advice New Zealand is an opportunity to have one united voice for the group and send a clear message on our position to policy and decision makers, and to the public.”
This article was first published in our sister publication Insurance Business.
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