Pensions Management Institute appoints new president

The Pensions Management Institute (PMI) has appointed Paul Couchman, managing director at Premier Pensions (pictured), as its new president.

He will take over from the current president, Susan Andrews, partner at Pinsent Masons, on 18 July 2013. Gerry Degaute of the Royal Mail Pension Plan and re-elected Susan Smith, joint head of consulting and trusteeship services at Pi Consulting, will be vice presidents.

Couchman was elected to the PMI council in 2007 and was elected vice president in 2009 for a two-year term. During his time with the PMI, he has chaired both the membership and commercial development committees. 

Vince Linnane, chief executive officer at the PMI, said: “[Couchman] has a vast experience at both Mercer and more recently Premier of actually running a business, which will be invaluable to the PMI going forward. I am sure that he will bring the same market acumen and commercial drive to the role of PMI president.

“I am also pleased to welcome [Degaute] back to a second stint as a PMI officer, having been honourary treasurer between 1999 and 2001. Both, along with existing vice president Smith, will bring a wide range of experience and skills to the job ahead.”

Couchman added: “It is arguable as to whether the pensions industry has ever been in such a state of change and flux, facing many fundamental changes that automatic-enrolment has brought with it.

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“At the same time, the closure of most [defined benefit pension] schemes creates funding and management challenges while [defined contribution pension] scheme design continues to evolve.

“Making adequate provision for retirement has never been so important and my goal will be to support our industry professionals to not only meet but exceed the demands placed upon them and to help them to secure best member outcome and pension stability.”