Gavin Walker, currently an independent director, will replace Gary Judd as ASB's chairman in August.
Judd has been the bank's chairman since 1988. Walker, is also on the Guardians of the NZ Superannuation Fund's board and is an alumnus member of the New Zealand Business Roundtable. Ralph Norris, CEO of ASB's parent Commonwealth Bank of Australia, is a former Business Roundtable chairman.
Read ASB's statement below:
The long-serving Chairman of ASB Bank, Gary Judd QC, has announced his intention to retire following the August 2 board meeting.
The new Chairman will be board member, Gavin Walker. Under Mr Judd’s stewardship the ASB grew from a regional bank operating in Auckland and Northland with total assets of less than $1.9 billion to one of the largest, nationally operating financial services groups in the country with assets in excess of $63.2 billion at March 31, 2011.
Mr Judd was appointed a trustee of the then trustee bank in 1985 and became its Deputy President in 1987. He was ASB’s first Chairman when it became a public company in 1988.
The Chief Executive Officer of (ASB's parent) Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Sir Ralph Norris, who served as Managing Director of ASB for 10 years, paid tribute to Mr Judd’s strong focus on governance, and strategic and succession planning during his 23 years as Chairman of ASB.
“Gary is a leader of great integrity, and his approach to business has made a significant contribution to the financial service group’s ongoing success and culture. He has been a key member of the leadership group that has made the ASB what it is today.”
Mr Judd said that following the adoption of a new medium term strategic plan last year, he felt the time was right for him to hand over leadership to the next generation.
“Gavin Walker, is an independent director of ASB, has been involved in the financial services sector for 30 years, as a senior executive and as a director. He is the right person to lead ASB’s board through the next stage of the financial services group’s growth.”
Mr Walker serves on the boards of Lion Nathan National Foods Limited, the Guardians of the NZ Superannuation Fund, Commonwealth Securities Limited and GPG Plc. He was previously Chief Executive of Bankers Trust New Zealand Limited. He is a member of the New Zealand Institute of Directors, the Centre of Independent Studies, the Institute of Finance Professionals and an alumnus member of the New Zealand Business Roundtable.
Mr Walker will also be appointed as Chairman of related company ASB Group (Life) Limited.