2018 Global Steering Committee Election (29 October to 09 November 2018)

Please submit this voting form here by 17.00 (CET) 09 November 2018 

Each member institution will have one vote for each position. The candidate with the most votes will take the position. For positions that have received only one self-nomination, self-nominees will be appointed on a no-objection basis.

Position 2: Asia Pacific – Banking

Eric Williamson – Executive General Manager, Corporate Finance, National Australia Bank Statement

Namita Vikas – Group President & Global Head, Climate Strategy & Responsible Banking, YES Bank Ltd. Statement

Rafe Haneef – CEO/Executive Director, CIMB Islamic Bank Berhad, and CEO, Group Islamic Banking, CIMB Group Statement

Position 4: Europe – Insurance

Alice Steenland – Director, Innovation, AXA Group Statement

Matthias Seewald – Chief Investment Officer and Member of the Executive Committee, Allianz France Statement

Position 7: Asia Pacific – Insurance

Jacki Johnson – Group Executive, People, Performance & Reputation, Insurance Australia Group (IAG) Statement

Position 8: Latin America – Insurance

Patricia Coimbra – Human Resources and Sustainability Director, SulAmerica Seguros Statement

Open Position 10 shared amongst: Africa & Middle East – Insurance; Asia Pacific – Investment; North America – Insurance; North America – Investment

Barbara Turley-McIntyre – Vice President, Sustainability, The Co-operators Group Ltd Statement

Rowan Griffin – Head of Sustainability, Property, Lendlease Investment Management Statement


Candidate biographies and statements

Patricia Coimbra
Human Resources and Sustainability Director, SulAmerica Seguros

Representing UNEP FI member: SulAmerica Seguros (Brazil)

Connect with Patricia Coimbra on LinkedIn

MOTIVATION STATEMENT

I have been dealing with corporate and society challenges every day and what really motivates me is to be able to help the development of people and organizations that create a virtuous cycle of employability and human potential fulfillness. Principles and values are very important to me in my personal and professional life and was lucky to work in organizations with such strong principles and values, with equal opportunities and rigorous compliance.

I believe that through strong corporate organizations and stakeholders engagement, social and environment challenges can be addressed with much more efficiency than isolated actions.

I see UNEP FI network and power of influence as one of the best ways to put together challenges and demands to governments decisions, corporate actions and social dialogue for shared value benefits.

I hope I can both learn and contribute to the Global Steering Committee, representing Latin America Insurance Sector under the sustainability agenda.

BACKGROUND

I am responsible for the overall Sustainability & HR strategy and operations, for ESG (Environment, Social and Governance) business integration, sustainability reports and R$ 6.5 MM social investment strategy. Responsible for International Finance Corporation reports and United Nations Global Compact voluntary commitment. I also share responsibility with SulAmérica Asset Management for PRI commitment.

One recent accomplishment is to be part of Dow Jones Sustainability Indices list for the first time and be part of FTSE4GOOD list again.

SulAmérica employee engagement level has been improving in the last 4 years. In 2015, our engagement level was 75 % in Hay Group survey against 57% in 2013. The percentage of women in executives´ position increased by 14% in the last 3 years.

Before SulAmérica, I was HR Development Director for Oi telecommunications, supporting 1k executives, 25k employees and 30 k third parties (February 2011 – July 2013), in charge of leadership pipeline development, talent management, performance management, and technical training.

Most part of my career was developed in SC Johnson, as HR Director for Brazil, in charge of all HR subjects as well as External Communications and Giving Back (January 2001 – January 2011) leading significant organizational changes such as plant shut down, plant start-up, global acquisitions implementation and shared services center implementation in Argentina. In the same company, I worked for Sales in charge of category management in Key Accounts, and previously as Organizational Development Manager.

Before joining SC Johnson in 1998, I held different HR positions in Shell Brasil, such as Corporate and New Business HR Business Partner, Training Head and special projects HR leader (Cost leadership and Transformation). I started my career in Shell in 1989 as planning analyst and then planning head in Strategic Planning, developing local scenarios, facilitating business strategic reviews with Business Management Committees and developing information systems to support economic planning area.

I have earned a bachelor’s degree in information technology at PUC-RJ and economics at Universidade Candido Mendes-RJ, post graduation in Marketing at PUC-RJ and international executive trainings in SC Johnson and Shell Headquarters.

Rowan Griffin
Head of Sustainability, Property, Lendlease Investment Management

Representing UNEP FI member: Lendlease Investment Management (Australia)

Connect with Rowan Griffin on LinkedIn

MOTIVATION STATEMENT

Climate change continues to threaten the long-term future of the planet as we know it as we need to increase driving change in the global economies to assist in arresting this trend. The importance of the environmental/social/governance themes have experienced an enormous growth, especially since the Paris agreement, and creating positive impact is the next focus area. My strong drive and commitment to be able to influence and support change in the sphere of influence enabled through the UNEP-FI in combination with my role at Lendlease is why I am putting forward this motivation to fill the Open position on the Steering Committee.

Sustainability is a core principle and value pillar for Lendlease (an Australian listed global organization), and is supported by a sustainability framework that underpins Leanlease’s vision “To Create the Best Places”, and supports Lendlease’s commitment to contribute to making a difference in ethical, social, and environmental mega-trends. In 1973, the founder of Lendlease stated that “Companies must start justifying their worth to society, with greater emphasis placed on environmental and social impact rather than straight economics”, and this philosophy continues to inform the business purpose.

I wish to continue taking and am committed to, an active role in the development of sustainable outcomes, building on my experience in this field. Having been associated with a signatory of UNEP FI for around 10 years, and having been the Co-chair of the UNEP-FI Property Working Group from December 2009, for a 2-year period, and having continued being an active member of this working group, and contributing to issues and papers throughout the period till now.

BACKGROUND

Rowan joined Lendlease in 2014 and as Head of Sustainability for Lendlease’s Property operations in Australia is responsible for the development and implementation of Sustainability Strategy at a local and international level. Rowan ensures sustainability value is integrated across Lendlease’s portfolio of urban development and investment activities – delivering places that are valued by our customers and investors – ‘places for people’.

Rowan has more than 30 years’ experience in project and development management, investment, operations and general management, and responsible property investment and sustainability.

Prior to joining Lendlease, Rowan was Head of Sustainability – Property, Colonial First State Asset Management (CFSGAM) for 15 years, a subsidiary of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia. Prior to this, Rowan managed Barprop Limited, a property company listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange South Africa.

Rowan is a member of (and was the previous co-chair) of the Property Working Group of UNEP FI from December 2009 till December 2011. He is a member of the Corporate Advisory Board of the World Green Building Council (WGBC), and the Chair of the Property and Infrastructure Working Group for the Investor Group on Climate Change (IGCC), and is the past chair of the Property Council of Australia’s National Sustainability Roundtable. Rowan is a Fellow of the RICS and the API professional associations.

Rowan holds a Bachelor of Building Science from the University of Natal, South Africa and a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of South Africa.

Rafe Haneef
CEO/Executive Director, CIMB Islamic Bank Berhad, and CEO, Group Islamic Banking, CIMB Group

Representing UNEP FI member: CIMB Group (Malaysia)

Connect with Rafe Haneef on LinkedIn

MOTIVATION STATEMENT

Mr. Haneef desires to share with fellow members the social impact journey of Islamic finance and help to converge the Islamic finance objectives with SDGs.

Though CIMB Group began embracing sustainable finance practices in 2017, we have through our Islamic finance space been a leader in responsible banking and finance since 2003. Sustainble finance shares many common values and practices with Islamic finance. Islamic banks, from their inception, have devised various social and financial impact screening tools to exclude businesses that create negative impact to society and channeled financing towards activities that maximize benefits to individuales and society.

Most of the SDGs also shares the same objectives of Islamic finance and the SDGs could augment existing screens and form a useful yardstick for Islamic banks for managing both the positive and negative impacts of their activities.

Responsible banks can learn from Islamic banks about the various tolerance levels for engaging with companies that are involved in activities which can cause negative impacts. As an example, a food manufacturing company which also manufactures cigarettes can be financed by an Islamic bank if the revenue from cigarettes is below a certain threshold. Islamic finance also advocates the use of financial ratios for cash, debt, and receivables. These screens on the financial health of the companies limit the excessive use of leverage, which is often the root cause of most financial crises. Islamic finance also sreens out socially destrutive or useless financial instruments like certain derivatives and speculative finance products.

Through our Islamic finance franchise, we have also been leading the Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) and Green Islamic fixed income instruments (sukuk). To date, CIMB Islamic has had a key role in the issuance of two SRI sukuks in the education space and two green financing sukuk, including the first sovereign green USD sukuk. In the consumer banking space, some of our offering include paperless Ecosave savings account, as well as hybrid and green building mortgage financing products with preferential rates.

CIMB Group also desires to access resources and influencers to help it create an enabling environment to drive sustainability in ASEAN, a developing economic region rich in primary resources, as well as in the Islamic finance industry, primarily located in ASEAN, the Middle East, and Africa with strategic links to Europe. There is currently a low level of awareness and engagement with these two financial communities with the wider global sustainable banking and finance development.

BACKGROUND

CIMB has been on the sustainability journey since 2017. During this period, Mr. Haneef advocated for the organization to embrace sustainability holistically, and in particular, its role in sustainable finance. Engagement sessions were held with the Board of Directors for the various group companies, the group management committee, and the central bank.

To raise awareness and educate key internal stakeholders and employees, we engaged with the World Wildlife Fund, sustainable banking industry leaders in Australia, Asia, and Europe. Over the course of a year and a half, sustainability efforts escalated in prominence internally, and is now a key pillar of CIMB’s core strategy for the next 5 years in the Southeast Asia (ASEAN) region. As a result of this, CIMB Group is the first bank in the ASEAN region to become member of the core group of UNEP-FI members helping to develop the draft Principles of Responsible Banking. It has contributed to the implementation guidance under Principle I (Alignment) to include reference to the Islamic banking industry.

This is emblematic of our ongoing efforts to spearhead and contribute substantially to thought leadership on sustainability for the banking industry as a whole, on the strength of Mr. Haneef’s leading reputation in the international Islamic banking and finance industry.

The results of his strategic efforts to-date include
(1) CIMB Islamic’s inclusion as a founding member of Bank Negara Malasia’s Value-Based Intermediation (VBI) Community of Practitioners, working to develop VBI together with the central bank to contextualize and drive sustainability with Islamic finance institutions in Malaysia.
(2) CIMB Islamic working with INCEIF (a globally leading university for Islamic Finance) to generate public-private research and discourse on how Islamic finance institutions can embark on sustainability, and
(3) Mr. Haneef serving as Organising Chairman of the Global Islamic Finance Forum 2018, an internationally recognized industry conference, whose theme centered on how the international Islamic banking and finance industry can embrace sustainability as a core driver of future growth and unveiling of VBI guidance documents for public consultation.
(4) Mr. Haneef is a founding trustee of RFI Foundation in the United Kingdom which is focusing on creating more awareness on sustainable finance and integrating Islamic finance with sustainable finance globally.

Jacki Johnson
Group Executive, People, Performance & Reputation, Insurance Australia Group (IAG)

Representing UNEP FI member: Insurance Australia Group (IAG) (Australia)

Connect with Jacki Johnson on LinkedIn

MOTIVATION STATEMENT

My key motivation for continuation on the Global Steering Committee is based on a personal and professional level.

As an Executive of IAG I am committed to playing a role where I can help influence to “make our world a safer place”. The purpose of IAG. On a personal level, my purpose of assisting people and communities to adapt, learn and strengthen their resilience aligns with contributing on this Steering Committee. My original profession as an Occupational Therapist with a Safety Science qualification, and now with over 27 years in the Insurance industry, all provide sound experience for me to constructively contribute. The roles I have played in assisting teams and communities recover after cyclones, floods, bushfires and Earthquakes contribute to my Vision for UNEP FI to help the world mitigate the risk of social and economic impact of increasing events. I see the challenge is to build on the strong foundations and take it to the next level where communities can prepare adapt and strengthen, through the work we have now started in partnership with NAB to develop a Resilient and Sustainable Finance Roadmap in Australia and New Zealand. I believe that my time as UNEP FI GSC member for Asia-Pacific has been served well, and I would value the opportunity to continue to build on the momentum that has been begun through the roadmap work.

Knowing that the financial services industry will play a critical role in the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) and the combination of IAG’s organisational purpose and my own individual purpose, outlined above, makes me incredibly excited about the role UNEP FI and sustainable finance can play in helping business contribute to the delivery of the SDG’s.

BACKGROUND

Jacki is Group Executive, People, Performance & Reputation and reporting to the CEO sits on the Group Leadership Team (GLT), reporting to the Board of Directors. As part of the GLT she is accountable for the collective setting of Group-wide organisational strategy and has accountability for one of the three organisational strategic priorities on organisational Agility. She plays a critical role in the delivery of group-wide priorities and the development of a truly purpose led organisation with a high-performance culture and strong reputation that drives the performance of the organisation. She has ensured the Board and GLT considers the SDGs in strategy setting and led the organisations overall approach to ESG and Sustainability.

In 2017 she worked with her colleagues on the GLT to endorse and approve a group-wide Climate Action Plan that is embedded across the organisation. She also led IAG’s first TCFD aligned disclosure and continued acknowledgment on the DJSI World Index. More recently Jacki has taken a lead role in the development of a Resilient and Sustainable Finance Roadmap for Australia and New Zealand and engaged extensively across the finance sector, government and regulatory bodies to galvanise support and commitment to this work, in partnership with UNEP FI and NAB as the Insurance and Banking GSC members for Asia-Pacific.

In her current role on the UNEP FI Global Steering Committee, she has actively contributed to the global strategy and taken a Committee level accountability for approach to financial management.
She is a member of Chief Executive Women and a member of the Steering Committee for Sydney 100 Resilient Cities. Jacki is Non-Executive Director for Community First Credit Union and a member of the Member of Corporate Governance and Remuneration Committee and an Executive Director of IAG International Holdings and a member of the IAG Ethics Committee.

From 2010 to 2016 Jacki was Chief Executive for IAG’s New Zealand business. Former roles include President of the Insurance Council of New Zealand, Chair of the Christchurch Recovery Chief Executives’ meeting, and Executive Director IAG NZ.

Since joining IAG in 2001, Jacki has held several senior positions in both direct and intermediated insurance, including as Chief Executive Officer of IAG’s business partnerships division. Jacki also established IAG’s online start-up business, The Buzz which received an Australia Business Award in 2010 for outstanding achievement in Innovation. This business was migrated into IAGs direct business.

Jacki was recognised by the NZ Herald in December 2015 as NZ Executive of the Year. She is a former Non-Executive Director of the New South Wales WorkCover Authority and the Personal Injury Education Foundation.

Matthias Seewald
Chief Investment Officer and Member of the Executive Committee, Allianz France

Representing UNEP FI member: Allianz SE (France)

Connect with Matthias Seewald on LinkedIn

MOTIVATION STATEMENT

As part of CIO responsibility, the aim of responsible investments into a well invested portfolio is a key task. All the more as risk/return relationship of traditional versus responsible investments has already started to change and will continue to do so. This will have an impact on the overall financial system and needs to be accompanied by changes in the regulatory framework, which is why in this era of energy transition; we need global leadership and a cooperative governance framework.

As the partnership between United Nations Environment and the global financial sector with a mission to promote sustainable finance, UNEP FI gathers more than 200 financial institutions, including banks, insurers, and investors. For me, this is a very good platform to exchange and work together to understand how could finance help to address today’s environmental, social and governance challenges.

At Allianz France, we consider ESG criteria in three forms applicable to our entire investment portfolio, each form is incorporated in the previous one. There is a gradual shift from short-term profit towards long-term value creation along the three forms. The first form is responsible investment by having a clear defined exclusion policy. The second form is ESG compliant investment by systematically integrating ESG considerations across asset classes and along investment lifecycle which leads to at least no harm. The third form is impact investing where measurable environmental and/or social benefits go hand in hand with market rate returns. My main take away from our three-form approach for the Global Steering Committee is that we could advocate a similar paradigm shift within financial actors.

BACKGROUND

Since April 2013, I’m taking on the responsibility of being member of the Executive Committee at Allianz France in charge of the Investments and member of the Investment Management Board at Allianz Group.

I have been working in the financial sector for more than 27 years, having a holistic view thanks to my different previous functions including accounting, financial reporting & controlling as well as investment management. Along the way, especially in recent years, it is becoming clear that we need to act quickly in face of planetary sustainability thresholds.

At Allianz France Investment, I initiate and steer sustainable finance relevant projects, including among other, report in line with the French Energy Transition Law, strategies on ESG and climate change, green bond assessment as well as climate value at risk study (considering the carbon pricing scenarios). At Allianz Group level, my department participates in the ESG scoring, the sciences-based target task force and engagement working group. I also made appearances as speaker and/or panel member at a number of conferences around sustainable finance topic.

Alice Steenland
Director, Innovation, AXA Group

Representing UNEP FI member: AXA Group (France)

Connect with Alice Steenland on LinkedIn

MOTIVATION STATEMENT

I am applying for a position within the Global Steering Committee because of my continued commitment to sustainable finance and my continued belief that the UN Finance Initiative has always played, and should continue to play, a central and unique role in its development.

I was an active contributor to the drafting and launch of the UN Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI), and have served as a Board member of the PSI since its creation. The experience allowed me to witness first-hand the convening power of the UN and the capacity of global initiatives of this kind to build both alignment and momentum across an industry.

Now, I believe we are living in a turning point in history, and are at a crossroads for what has grown into a global sustainable finance movement. The appetite amongst investors for sustainability has never been higher, while key national governments across the world are taking steps backwards in terms of sustainable development. In the coming months and years it is possible that the engine of transformation is no longer regulation but the financial and economic business case for change.

Now, more than ever, institutions like the UN have a role to play in bringing together broad coalitions of leaders with a vision of what sustainable financial markets can and should look like in order to drive meaningful change throughout the global economy. I would be happy to contribute to this mission by participating in the Global Steering Committee.

BACKGROUND

Alice Steenland is currently a Director and member of the Executive Leadership Team of AXA Next, the new Innovation Business Unit of the AXA Group.

Alice joined the AXA Group in September 2008 as AXA’s first Chief Corporate Responsibility Officer. Under her tenure, AXA moved into a leadership position in global sustainability rankings (Best Global Green Brand, Dow Jones Sustainability Index, etc.), landed a position as the #1 insurance stock pick of responsible investors globally, and became the first global insurance company to pioneer both impact investing as well as coal and tobacco divestment, amongst other accomplishments.

Alice was formerly the Director of Investor Research at Vigeo, a leading ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) ratings agency. Prior to joining Vigeo, Alice worked in the business consulting division of Arthur Andersen, and acted as an independent consultant in the field of strategic planning for Save the Children USA.

She has been a member of the Boards of the United Nations Principles for Sustainable Insurance, AXA Matrix, and Admical, and is currently a member of the Advisory Council of IDDRI and of the Yale School of Management’s Council of Global Advisors. She regularly gives talks on sustainability and sustainable finance at conferences and universities.

Alice received her Bachelor’s degree in Human Biology from Stanford University and holds an MBA from the Yale School of Management.

Barbara Turley-McIntyre
Vice President, Sustainability, The Co-operators Group Ltd

Representing UNEP FI member: The Co-operators Group Ltd (Canada)

Connect with Barbara Turley-McIntyre on LinkedIn

MOTIVATION STATEMENT

My experience with UNEP-FI initiatives include:
• actively participated on the UNEP-FI Insurance Commission from 2009 – 2012
• engaged in developing the Principles of Sustainable Insurance (PSI)
• hosted the North American PSI consultations in Guelph, Canada in 2012
• co-hosted the consultation for the Inquiry: Design of a Sustainable Financial System in Toronto, Canada in 2014
• member of the PSI Board 2012 – 2016
• co-chaired the North American Task Force (NATF) from 2011-2014
• member of the Global Steering Committee 2011-2014 & 2016-2018

Through these experiences, I have come to appreciate the critical role that the UNEP-FI plays in sustainable finance. As our changing climate, economic uncertainty and growing social divisions demonstrate, we cannot delay seeking global partnerships and solutions. The UNEP-FI is a powerful organization and with its global membership we have the opportunity to play an increasing role in these global systemic issues.

At present, I am the sole representative on the GSC from Canada and the co-operative sector. Canada is has positioned itself to become an active participant in building a sustainable financial future, with increased support from various levels of government to transition to a low-carbon economy. I have played an active participant in growing the Canadian UNEP-FI members.

As part of GSC, I would continue to bring my experience with UNEP-FI and the Canadian insurance sector. I ask for your support of my nomination to GSC and I would be privileged to represent position # 10 on the committee.

BACKGROUND

Throughout my insurance career, I have held various roles including independent insurance broker, underwriting manager, community and shareholder relations liaison. For the past 10 years I have been responsible for sustainability leadership at a national co-operative insurance and financial services group in Canada. I lead the enterprise-wide integration of the sustainability policy and strategy, and I have leadership responsibility for the Annual Integrated Report and activities leading to a low carbon economy.

I hold a Masters in Environment and Business and a Chartered Insurance Professional designation and am a Sessional Lecturer at the University of Waterloo, Faculty of Environment.

My experience with Sustainable Finance most recently includes the following:

1. Sustainable Financial Framework. I co-led the recent work in Canada on catalzying our national government to develop a sustainable financial framework for the country. By engaging leadership from the UN Inquiry, the UNEP-FI and specifically our Canadian UNEP-FI members both with financial resources and time commitments we were instrumental in having the federal Ministers of Finance and the Environment & Climate Change strike an Expert Panel on Sustainable Finance in 2018.

2. Introduction of a Flood Insurance Product for Canadians. Until April 2015, Canada was the only G7 country without flood coverage for its citizens. The Co-operators developed flood models that allowed us to bring a product to market for all Canadians – even those who are most vulnerable from the peril. Additionally, we developed the Partners for Action Network (P4A) at the University of Waterloo, a diverse group of stakeholders including insurers, re-insurers, developers, banks, NGOs and government leaders to build flood resiliency. I hold a position on the National Flood Advisory Council in Canada seeking to increase consumer awareness and action as well as seeking a sustainable flood funding model.

3. Launch of Impact Investments. In early 2016, The Co-operators committed that, by the end of 2018, 6-10% of its institutional investments will be directed to investments that have intentional, measured and publicly-tracked social and environmental impacts. We have exceeded this target and set a new target of 20% of our institutional investments in impact investments by the end of 2022.

4. Transition to a Low-Carbon Economy. The Co-operators Board of Directors passed a motion to support management’s public advocacy of pricing carbon. We continue to be an active public advocate engaging with government, business, suppliers and clients to transition to a low-carbon economy.

Namita Vikas
Group President & Global Head, Climate Strategy & Responsible Banking, YES Bank Ltd.

Representing UNEP FI member: YES BANK Limited (India)

Connect with Namita Vikas on LinkedIn

MOTIVATION STATEMENT

I believe that organizational goals must positively impact and contribute towards overall sustainable development mandate while ensuring sustainable business growth. This belief has driven me during my leadership positions at Marico, one of India’s largest FMCG companies, Microsoft Corporation, Confederation of India Industry (CII), India’s largest business association and now at YES BANK, India’s fourth largest private sector bank, where I lead agenda on climate change, sustainable development, corporate social responsibility and policy advocacy.

With a rich experience spanning 28 years in stakeholder relations and sustainable development, I have witnessed the shift in India from lack of awareness of development issues in India, to a call for active actions from governments, corporate sector, and society. My experiences have ranged from working with grassroots communities to formulating ‘board room to copy room’ strategies with actional goals, which, I believe, have contributed to creating a positive impact in India’s development journey.

I believe that in order to achieve global transformation, the banking sector has to play a pivotal role in reorienting economy and financial flows towards sustainable development. Over the last six years, through my work in thought leadership on climate change, corporate social responsibility, and through my extensive engagements with UN as chair of NCFA Steering committee and as a previous member of Global Steering Committee and APAC chair of UNEP FI, I have helped forged strong partnership with national and international governments, multilateral agencies, financial institutions and civil society globally and regionally.

By being part of the global steering committee, I will not play an instrumental role in moving the needle in right direction towards achieving the goals of transforming the financial sector, but will also inspire other leaders in the banking sector to lead their own organizations towards sustainable financing.

BACKGROUND

With 28 years of diverse global experience in Banking, Technology & FMCG, with particular focus on Design Thinking, Sustainable Finance, Climate Action, ESG Risk Management, Public Policy & Corporate Citizenship, I have been instrumental in outlining YES BANK’s integrated approach towards climate finance, by integrating ESG parameters in financial decisions, developing innovative products and services along with various business verticals addressing environmental and social concerns fostering financial inclusion, facilitating and mobilizing investments in positive impact sectors and building institutional capacity and culture of ‘Responsible Banking’.

In line with its vision to be benchmark financial institution for sustainability and inclusivity in India, I spearhead development of focussed approach towards climate finance, which has led to multiple industry first achievements. These include issuance of India’s maiden green bonds in 2015, facilitation of nation’s first ever social bond in 2017 and launch of India’s first green retail product ‘Green Future Deposit’ in 2018 with a commitment of mobilizing the fund deposited by customers to positive impact sectors.

Spearheading the climate strategy at the bank, I have been instrumental in conceptualizing and developing innovative financing mechanisms and establishing alliances with internal and external stakeholders including national government agencies, multinational development banks and financial institutions to accelerate climate finance in India.

Apart from being a certified independent director and a prominent speaker at influential national and international platforms such as the UN General Assembly and G20 amongst others, I hold a number of key positions. I have been elected as the Chairperson of Natural Capital Finance Alliance & serves on the boards of YES FOUNDATION; Asia Venture Philanthropy Network (AVPN); World Resource Institute – India GHG Program; and Indian Centre for CSR (ICCSR). I am also an active member of key councils & committees of industrial bodies such as the BIS, CII, FICCI, IMC and BCCI.

I was ranked one of the “Leading Women in Business Sustainability” by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) and was globally recognized as the “Sustainability Leader of the Year” by Ethical Corporation, UK in 2017. In 2018, I was named one of “Asia’s Top Sustainability Superwomen” by CSR Works International.

Eric Williamson
Executive General Manager, Corporate Finance, National Australia Bank

Representing UNEP FI member: National Australia Bank (Australia)

Connect with Eric Williamson on LinkedIn

MOTIVATION STATEMENT

My strong motivation to continue in the Asia Pacific Banking position for UNEP FIs Global Steering Committee (GSC) stems from my keen interest in ensuring Australia is actively engaged in the cutting edge of global sustainable finance developments and to be able to sharing our insights and learn from a global peer group of like mined financial institutions. I believe I can contribute to strong governance and the strategic direction of UNEP FI and support the emerging sustainable and responsible finance agenda through a role on the UNEP FI GSC, particularly within the Asia-Pacific region. The role UNEP FI and its members is unique in bringing together all parts of the finance sector – banks, insurers and investors to lead and deliver on the sustainable finance agenda around the world. This is critical to progressing the fight against climate change and supporting the achievement of the sustainable development goals – I firmly believe we can only do this by working together. NAB has been involved with the UNEP FI since 2003 and I would be honored to personally contribute to the work of the GSC going forward as the finance sector around the world works together to build back trust with its customers and local communities.

If my nomination for the Global Steering Committee is supported, I believe I can contribute with a new but experienced voice, which I believe can greatly benefit the Committee and the work of UNEP FI.

BACKGROUND

I believe financial institutions have a key role to play in supporting the low carbon transition and in underpinning sustainable development. With an extensive background in capital markets and treasury, I currently lead the Corporate Finance team at National Australia Bank (NAB). Within the Corporate & Institutional Bank, the Corporate Finance team plays a key role in delivering NAB’s extensive sustainable finance work. This supports the bank’s large corporate and institutional clients both in Australia and New Zealand and the international markets in which NAB operates – in Asia, the United States and the United Kingdom. In this role, I have supported the development of new and innovative green and sustainable finance products that have often led the market in Australia. In addition to supporting our customers, I Chair NAB’s Climate Change Working Group –leading a Group-wide cross-functional team that is implementing NAB’s climate change strategy – which covers work on both the risks and opportunities associated with climate change. In my role of Chief Risk Officer for the NAB’s Corporate & Institutional Bank I saw the importance of effective management of environmental, social and governance risks on a day to day basis and have encouraged and supported ongoing integration of ESG risk into our Risk Management Framework.

I’m proud to have recently supported several innovative contributions to sustainable finance including a green tranche RMBS (Residential Mortgage-Backed Security), a Low Carbon Shared Portfolio that provides investors with access to a share of renewable energy loans; two SDG Green bonds, which contribute towards meeting specific SDGs, and ESG-linked loans in the UK market.

During 2018, I was privileged to have filled the UNEP FI GSC position for Asia-Pacific Banking following the departure of my colleague Steve Lambert from the bank. In this role I worked closely with Jacki Johnson from IAG, to co-sponsor a successful UNEP FI sustainable finance conference in Sydney. NAB’s collaboration with IAG, as well as UNEP FI, the Australian Investor Group on Climate Change, the Responsible Investment Association of Australia and PRI Australia delivered a successful conference and has led to support for the development of sustainable finance roadmaps for Australia and New Zealand.