Damian Hill, chief executive of REST, has been named fund executive of the year at the FEAL annual award dinner.

Along with the accolade he will receive a $20,000 education grant from AMP Capital, which previous winners of the award have used on week long leadership courses at leading business schools in the USA and Europe.

Hill’s innovation in technology, responses to challenges and his strategic planning were paid tribute to by John Meagher, head of institutional business at AMP Capital, who added that it was Hill’s contribution to the wider industry which set him apart.

As evidence of this, Meagher listed Hill’s roles as a director of ASFA, a president of the Industry Funds Forum, a past director of FEAL and as chair of Super Friend.

In accepting the award, Hill paid tribute to his board and to the employees at REST, but also told of his continuing passion for his job. “When I wake out in the morning I leap out of bed exactly as I did nearly 30 years ago when I started in the industry,” he said.

He also cited his commitment to continual learning, to being open minded, seeking alternative views and being adaptive.

Hill was chosen for the award by a judging panel consisting of Neil Cochrane, chair of First State Super, Debbie Blakey, chief executive of HESTA, Leeanne Turner, chief executive of MTAA Super, David Elia, chief executive of HOSTPLUS and Dr Sam Wiley, principal of Melbourne Business School.