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Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance

Whelan prepares to bow out as successor appointed

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Outgoing Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) CEO Rob Whelan has spoken of his pride in his team as he prepares to leave in September, when successor Andrew Hall joins from Commonwealth Bank.

Mr Whelan, speaking to insuranceNEWS.com.au before Mr Hall’s appointment was announced today, said he hopes the new CEO has an easier time in the job than he did.

His tenure began shortly before the devastating 2011 Queensland floods, and has ended with unprecedented bushfires and a pandemic.

“I wish [the new CEO] well, but I think it’s going to continue pretty much on this sort of trajectory,” he said.

“We’ve got a really good team of people in the ICA and I’m very proud of them. They do a terrific job and work extremely hard.

“They are highly professional in what they do and that does a lot for our reputation as an industry – that we are seen as competent, capable representatives of a very complex and important part of the economy.

“The leadership can come and go, but that team will be there to make sure the wheels keep turning and the industry is properly represented.”

As reported in a Breaking News bulletin earlier today, Mr Hall has spent the past seven years as Commonwealth Bank’s EGM Corporate Affairs, and was previously Woolworths’ Director of Corporate and Public Affairs for six years.

ICA President and Chairman Gary Dransfield says the appointment follows “an extensive national recruitment process”.

“[Mr Hall’s] corporate knowledge, and his understanding of customers, the regulatory and political environments and the financial services sector, will help him chart ICA’s advocacy program to elevate the value of insurance both to our economy and our society.”

Mr Hall says general insurance plays a “vital role” in the Australian economy and the recovery from the pandemic and bushfire crisis.

“Insurance will also need to continue tackling the challenges of climate change and important regulatory changes, while also transitioning to the new Code of Practice, which must meet and exceed community expectations,” he said.

An in-depth interview with Rob Whelan will be published in the upcoming edition of Insurance News magazine.