People & Appointments: New roles for Hiro Mizuno, Mike Tyson and Bonnie Saynay

The latest ESG movers and shakers

Hiro Mizuno, the former CIO of Japan's Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF), has joined Danone's independent Mission Committee. Alongside the likes of former UN SDG advisor David Nabarro and Rockefeller Foundation President Rajiv Shah, Mizuno will join a team tasked with reviewing Danone's roadmap and progress on social and environmental objectives. Mizuno left the world's biggest pension fund earlier this year, and has since also taken up a board position as Tesla and a Special Advisor to think-tank the Milken Institute

Bonnie Saynay, former Head of Responsible Investment at Invesco, will be joining ISS ESG, the responsible investment arm of Institutional Shareholder Services, to Lead Global ESG Research. She will oversee ISS’ ESG data strategy and research across the globe and report to ESG Business Head, Marija Kramer. Saynay spent nearly two decades at Invesco, leaving at the end of 2019.

Ray Dhirani, Head of Sustainable Finance at WWF-UK, has been appointed to WHEB Asset Management’s independent Advisory Committee, along with Carbon Tracker’s Kingsmill Bond, Mike Clark of Ario Advisory and Carole Ferguson, Head of Investment Research at CDP.  

World heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson has reportedly been appointed as a Special Advisor to Canada-based impact investment house QuestCap, which makes investments into socially-impactful projects including health research to aid the COVID-19 response. 

Melanie Brooks, Head of ESG Risk Monitoring at Norges Bank Investment Management, will join the CARN Capital investment team in September. Before joining NBIM in 2015, Brooks headed up responsible investment at Folketrygdfondet, during which time she co-founded the Norwegian Forum for Responsible and Sustainable Investments.

Aegon Asset Management has promoted Miranda Beacham to Senior Responsible Investment Manager, and she will lead the firm’s Edinburgh-based responsible investment team and oversee UK stewardship activities. Beacham co-founded the responsible investment team at Kames Capital, the former subsidiary of Aegon which is being merged into its parent company as part of a restructure. Aegon Asset Management has also appointed Retno Kusumaningtyas as a Senior Responsible Investment Associate, based in The Hague, and Georgina Laird as a Sustainable Investment Analyst based in Scotland. 

Impact investor and social entrepreneur, Geoff Davis will join the Sorenson Impact Centre at the David Eccles School of Business as its new CEO. The centre focuses on catalysing “high impact” programmes, policy and investment. Previously, Geoff served as the CEO and Managing Partner of Cicero Impact Capital and will remain a Senior Advisor to Cicero alongside his new role.

The US Solar Fund has appointed Thomas Plagemann as an independent Non-Executive Director, with immediate effect. New York-based Plagemann is Chief Commercial Officer and Head of Capital Markets for rooftop solar specialists Vivint Solar and a Board member of the US Solar Energy Industry Association.

Scotiabank has launched a new Sustainable Finance Group within its Global Banking and Markets division. The Canada-based bank has said the goal of the new team, led by Bob Nguyen, Scotiabank Managing Director and Head of Corporate Fixed-Income Origination, would be to bolster efforts on decarbonisation and the green economy. 

The American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE), has elected Abby Watson, Head of Government Affairs for North America at Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, to its Board of Directors. 

Federated Homes International has announced the termination of David Kenneth Watson as a Non-Executive Director. Watson is a Senior Independent Director of Countrywide, Senior Independent Director at TR Property Investment Trust and Non-Executive Director and Chairman of the Audit and Risk Committee of Kames Capital.

Sir Suma Chakrabarti is departing his European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Presidency after a second and final term. Chakrabarti won two elections in 2012 and 2016, the first ever in the EBRD’s history. He will continue to be involved in international development and green issues, taking up a number of pro bono positions on leaving the bank. From this autumn, he will be Chair of the Board of Trustees of ODI, a think-tank focused on international development. 

Swiss Sustainable Finance has elected four additional representatives to its board, including Alexandra Lau from Basellandschaftliche Kantonalbank, Dr. Manuel Rybach from Credit Suisse, Dominique Becht from Stiftung Abendrot and Fiona Frick from Unigestion.

Triodos Investment Management has appointed Rosl Veltmeijer as a Fixed-Income Portfolio Manager for the sustainable discretionary portfolios of Triodos Bank Private Banking. Veltmeijer has worked for Triodos Investment Management since 2001, joining the portfolio management team in 2017. She will succeed Jeroen van Herwaarden, who was appointed as Fund Manager of Triodos Euro Bond Impact Fund last month.