media release 


2 August 2018


HESTA CEO Debby Blakey named FEAL Fund Executive of the Year


HESTA CEO Debby Blakey was announced the winner of the 2018 Fund Executive Association Limited (FEAL) Fund Executive of the Year at an awards ceremony in Sydney last night.

The annual award recognises a fund executive for their outstanding contribution in leading an organisation dedicated to improving outcomes for members as well as demonstrating strong industry leadership.

Ms Blakey said she was honoured to be acknowledged for the award, paying tribute to the Fund’s members and the team at HESTA.

“This award is really a result of a team effort at HESTA that’s entirely focused on making a real difference to the financial future of every member,” Ms Blakey said.

“Our members spend their working lives supporting and helping others — they’re nurses, aged care and community sector professionals and early childhood educators. It’s a privilege to serve them by advocating for their interests and safeguarding and improving their financial future.”

Ms Blakey thanked FEAL for the award saying she was honoured to be acknowledged by an organisation focused on supporting strong leadership and innovation in the superannuation industry.

“It really is an honour to be recognised by FEAL — an organization that does so much for leaders in our industry, with the ultimate aim of delivering a better retirement for all Australians,” she said.

Ms Blakey has worked at HESTA for almost a decade, first heading up the $46bn health and community service fund’s advice team, before being appointed Deputy CEO. In March 2015, Ms Blakey was appointed HESTA CEO and over three years has led a wide-ranging program of change, setting up HESTA to be adaptable and to thrive in a rapidly changing environment.

A strong advocate committed to driving meaningful change for generations to come, Ms Blakey is at the forefront of calls to make Australia’s superannuation system fairer for women and the lower paid.

In her role at HESTA, she’s championed gender diversity, with HESTA named an Employer of Choice by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) for the past two years.

Ms Blakey has been a WGEA Pay Equity Ambassador since 2016.

Under her guidance, HESTA has continued to pioneer new innovations in its responsible investment approach, with HESTA recently one of the first funds to adopt an Australian stewardship code.

Ms Blakey holds a number of directorships at key industry organisation: Industry Super Australia Ltd (ISA), Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST), Australian Council of Superannuation Investors (ACSI) and FEAL.

FEAL Chief Executive Officer, Joanna Davison, said she was delighted to recognise Ms Blakey as the seventeenth annual fund executive of the year

“Debby is dedicated to delivering positive differences for the financial futures of her scheme’s members, as well as driving positive change in the industry as a whole,” Ms Davison said.

“Alongside successfully leading HESTA, she has contributed to industry discussions and displayed commitment and advocacy across the financial services sector, with her achievements in promoting diversity being particularly commendable.”


HESTA is an industry superannuation fund dedicated to those working in the Health and Community Services Sector. HESTA has over 850,000 members and manages more than $46 billion of members’ assets. Note: HESTA is an acronym and should be capitalised.


Media contact:

Sam Riley

Media Relations Manager

(03) 8660 1684


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