media release


31 October 2018


Nicola Roxon announced as new HESTA Independent Chair


HESTA today announced that the Hon. Nicola Roxon will become its new Independent Chair when Angela Emslie steps down from the position at the end of her term on 31 December 2018.

The HESTA Board welcomed Ms Roxon, acknowledging the unique insights, skills and experience she would bring to the Fund and a deep understanding of the health and community services sector.

In the five years since leaving politics, Ms Roxon has brought her extensive public and commercial experience to a number of key Board appointments. She is currently Chair of Bupa Australia and New Zealand, and the Cancer Council Australia. She is also a Non-Executive Director at Dexus and Lifestyle Communities. Ms Roxon is the Chair of the Accounting Professional and Ethical Standards Board and an Adjunct Professor within the College of Law and Justice at Victorian University, but will be stepping down from both these roles to focus on the HESTA Chair position.

In 2003, Ms Roxon was the first woman in Australia to be appointed Attorney General, and is well known in the Australian health sector following her time as Federal Health Minister, where she oversaw major health reform and introduced world-first plain packaging for tobacco products.

“I have long admired HESTA for its leadership in responsible investment and stewardship, and its gutsy advocacy on issues that matter for members,” Ms Roxon said.

“I am excited to be joining HESTA at this important time for the superannuation industry more broadly.”

HESTA CEO Debby Blakey said, “We are delighted to welcome Nicola to HESTA. Her rich experience in health and governance will be a huge asset as we continue to focus on being leaders in the superannuation sector and making a real difference to the financial future of our members.”

Ms Blakey paid tribute to the enormous contribution of current Chair Angela Emslie who has been a Director of the fund for over 20 years and Chair since 2010.

“Angela is such a big part of the unique Board culture at HESTA that’s so strongly imbued with the values of the health and community sector and is deeply dedicated to our members’ best interests,” Ms Blakey said.

“A true pioneer in responsible investment, Angela has been an inspiring leader and influential advocate for members and the industry fund sector. Angela’s also been an incredible support and mentor to so many in the industry, including me, for which I am enormously grateful.”

“Angela leaves with HESTA enjoying the highest rating from all independent superannuation ratings agencies and with the fund recognised as a global leader in responsible investment. It’s an outstanding legacy, which has helped set the fund up for long-term success in the years ahead,” Ms Blakey said.

Ms Emslie said, “HESTA is a very special organisation and I feel deeply privileged to have served our members. I believe we are delivering on our mission to make a real difference to our members’ financial futures and I know Nicola will make an outstanding contribution to the HESTA Board and continue this focus.”

The 2018 Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) Trustee of the Year, Ms Emslie is on the Board of UN-backed Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), the world’s leading proponent of responsible investment. Ms Emslie has also served on a range of industry fund and related boards for over 20 years and is currently a director on the boards of asset consultant Frontier Advisors and Suicide Prevention Australia.

Ms Emslie served as a Director of the AIST from 2002 to 2016, including as Deputy President from 2012 to 2014 and President from 2014 to 2016, where she was a strong supporter of the equal representative trustee governance model.

“On behalf of HESTA’s members, employees and management, I’d like to thank Angela for her many years of committed and inspiring service on our Board and beyond.

“Her passion for our shared vision of a stronger financial future for HESTA members and a better world for them to retire into has been at the core of her role as Chair. We wish her all the best for the future,” Ms Blakey said.

For more information, contact Sam Riley, Media Relations Manager on 03 8660 1684.


HESTA is an industry superannuation fund dedicated to those working in the Health and Community Services Sector. HESTA has over 860,000 members and manages more than $46 billion of members’ assets. Please note HESTA is an acronym and should be capitalised.

Media contact:

Sam Riley

Media Relations Manager

(03) 8660 1684


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