SuperFriend, the workplace wellbeing partner of the superannuation and insurance industry, has announced three new appointments to its board of directors.
Sarah Guthleben from Equip Super will join the board along with workplace health expert Niki Ellis and mental health campaigner Mitch Wallis.
The new appointments mark an even more diverse, highly skilled board from within financial services, workplace mental health and lived experience, according to SuperFriend chief executive, Margo Lydon.
Importantly, the appointments mean the SuperFriend board has an almost even gender split.
“Working within the male-dominated financial services industry, we’ve overtly sought both gender and skill diversity to ensure Australians are fairly and equitably represented,” she said.
Lydon said a review of the board’s collective skills highlighted the value of seeking additional workplace mental health expertise from independent directors.
“We want to make a lasting, positive impact on Australian workplace mental health. To do this, we need the best minds guiding our organisation from diverse backgrounds representing our customers,”she said
Guthleben joins the board as a partner fund representative and has over 19 years’ experience in the human resources and financial services industry.
She is currently head of people, capability and enablement at Equip Super.
For her part, Ellis joins the SuperFriend board as an independent director. She has served on various boards since 1994 and brings a combination of experience in academia, research management, innovation in health and disability services delivery and insurance medicine.
Wallis also joins the board as an independent director. He founded an international not-for-profit mental health campaign to eradicate stigma called the ‘Heart on My Sleeve Movement’. This is now one of the fastest growing mental health organisations in Australia. Wallis was also appointed the first ambassador for the Australia & New Zealand Mental Health Association.
SuperFriend chair David Atkin, who is also chief executive of Cbus Super, said the new members would complete their board growth from four directors to eight, as part of their growth strategy and performance review.
“Their experience and collective passion for supporting mental health in workplaces will amplify our shared vision that all Australian workplaces are mentally healthy,” he said.