Risk Committee Chair For New Body Announced 


Financial Advice New Zealand has announced the respective Chair for each of its four member advisory committees (MACs).

Regan Thomas was named Chair for the Risk Insurance MAC, leading his fellow risk committee member representatives, Bree Catterall, Cecilia Farrow, Peter Rickards.

The confirmation of the four Chairs follow the appointments of all 16 MAC representatives announced in January.

The Chairs for the three remaining MACs include Paul Sewell for Financial Planning, Tim Fairbrother for Investments and Joel Oliver for Lending.

A financial adviser since 2002, Thomas has been Managing Director of MoneyTree Financial Services in Palmerston North since 2010.

Financial Advice New Zealand Risk Insurance MAC Chair, Regan Thomas
Professional Advisers Association Chair, Bruce Cortesi

The Professional Advisers Association (PAA) Chair, Bruce Cortesi, is on the Board of Financial Advice NZ and said Thomas has an all-round view of the risk adviser world, the issues affecting them and is a natural leader.

“I think his passion will inspire other risk advisers to want to further their careers and also professional development,” said Cortesi.

“He’s going to lead but also lift everyone else who goes along that journey with him.”

Each MAC is intended to be a voice and support mechanism for advisers in its respective sector.

The Risk committee met for its first meeting in February.

“One of the critical things for the Risk MAC is to focus on the issues that affect risk advisers at the grass-roots level,” explained Cortesi.

“That’s at their day-to-day business operating level without ignoring some of the overarching changes that are coming, in regards to legislation and the Code committee that would also impact the day-to-day efficiencies for the adviser in providing advice to New Zealanders,” he said.

Cortesi specified a number of issues the Risk committee will consider, including:

  • Helping advisers work through anxieties associated with regulation and compliance
  • Increasing mentors in the industry to help bring new advisers into the Risk space
  • How an advice business is sold to ensure the client can access quality ongoing advice
  • How advisers attract new clients in a new environment

Thomas said he considered it an honour to step up to be Chair of the Risk MAC.

“I saw a diverse range of backgrounds, age, gender, geographic locations and within my team as well,” he said, referring to the 16 member representatives of the four MACs.

“There’s a broad spectrum of skills and I’m really chuffed to be part of it and to be working with some really passionate, talented, dedicated, people who are all there for the same reason – because we really believe in what Financial Advice New Zealand is standing for already and what difference we think it could make to the profession,” he said.

“…We’re here to represent advice.”

“The three key words in our Terms of Reference were advocacy, standards and promotion and I really like the whole concept that we are coming from; we’re here to represent advice,” added Thomas.

“That means it’s beneficial to consumers of advice, to people who give advice and to the regulators who are ultimately, in theory, going to be concerned about the outcomes for the consumers.”

For advisers not currently members of an association, Thomas referred to professionals in other sectors such as doctors, lawyers, accountants and architects:

“They all have a professional body and if we all want to be seen as a profession, then it won’t be long before financial advisers come to see joining Financial Advice New Zealand as just what you do, if you’re a professional adviser,” said Thomas.