People & Appointments: UK pension sector ‘in turmoil’ after minister dismissed

The latest ESG movers and shakers: State Street poaches ESG director from Reuters, PGGM appoints head of SFDR and EU taxonomy team.

Guy Opperman has been dismissed as minister for pensions following the appointment of Liz Truss as UK prime minister. With seven years of service, Opperman is the the country’s longest-serving pensions minister and has overseen several key ESG initiatives, including introduction of mandatory TCFD reporting for pension schemes. He has worked on stewardship and launched a taskforce on social factors in investments. Kate Smith, head of pensions at Aegon, said the dismissal “leaves pensions in turmoil” as a number of important initiatives are unfinished and Opperman’s successor is yet to be announced.

State Street has appointed Amani Boros as head of ESG at State Street International (SSBI). She joins from Thomson Reuters, where she worked as director ESG and ERM. She has also held roles at Credit Suisse, Barclays and Deloitte, and is a founder of Amatte Group, a direct trade foods and coffee company.

Brenda Kramer has been promoted to lead PGGM’s SFDR and EU taxonomy implementation team following six years as a senior adviser and expert in sustainable finance at the firm. Kramer previously spent more than four years working as an EU representative on sustainable finance for the European Commission and was named one of the “Top 50 Women in Sustainable Finance 2022” by Lof and Women in Financial Services.

Lisa Woll will step down from her role as CEO at US SIF on 31 January, 2023. She has held the position for more than 16 years and will remain with the group until April in an advisory capacity. The sustainable finance network has formed a search committee and appointed a recruiter to find her successor. Before joining US SIF, Woll was executive director for the International Women’s Media Foundation and held high-level positions at several children’s rights groups.

Catherine Clark has been promoted to director of ESG policy and engagement at Prudential. She previously worked as head of international relations for the company, after spending nearly seven years as a trustee for non-profit organisation The Access Project, which supports students from disadvantaged backgrounds to attend top universities.

Nina Chen has been appointed chief climate risk officer by the US Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. She joins from the New York State Department of Financial Services, where she served as executive deputy superintendent of the climate division.

Mark Jeavons has taken over as head of sustainability at CRU, a global mining, metals and fertiliser business intelligence company. He spent 15 years working at Aon, most recently as head of climate change insights, where he developed a climate change scenarios toolkit and led ESG investment research.

Etienne Espagne has been appointed as senior climate economist at the World Bank. He joins from Agence Française de Développement, where he worked as senior economist for more than five years. He remains a research associate for CERDI Université Clermont Auvergne CNRS.

Carlotta Michetti has been promoted to senior research analyst at the Climate Bonds Initiative (CBI). She previously worked as a research analyst for CBI and spent more than three years as an analyst at Tenax Capital.

Raj Singh has joined Phoenix Group as senior engagement analyst, climate change. He previously worked as senior engagement manager for the Church of England Pensions Board.