NAPF appoints new chairman

The National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) has appointed Ruston Smith chairman.

He will succeed Mark Hyde Harrison, whose two-year tenure will end at the NAPF’s annual general meeting in October 2013.

Ruston is group pensions and insurable risk director at Tesco. In this role, he is accountable for the running of the group’s many schemes, including the in-house administration of benefits for more than 300,000 members in the UK pension scheme.

Before joining Tesco, Ruston was a director and company secretary at PZ Cussons, where he was also responsible for group pensions.

He has also held a non-executive role at the NAPF since 2007 and is currently chairman of its retirement policy council.

Smith said: “The NAPF is at the heart of the national debate on the future of retirement saving, and I am delighted to be taking on the role of chairman.

“As we live and work longer than ever before, our society is redefining what retirement means, and we are shifting away from a traditional and inflexible model where people work one day and retire the next.

“I am truly passionate about encouraging and helping people to save for their future. The pensions industry has an important and exciting role to play, and it can make a real difference to individual lives and the wider economy.

“Over the next few years, auto-enrolment will bring millions of people into pensions, and the NAPF will be working hard to ensure the reforms are a success. Good governance and sensible regulation, which protect savers and focus on maximising retirement income, are vital to build confidence in pension saving.

“I would like to thank Mark for his hard work and tenacity during a very busy time for pensions in the UK. I wish him every success in his future work.”

Hyde Harrison, added: “I congratulate Ruston on his appointment. He brings a wealth of knowledge and his experience will be of considerable value.

“I am confident he will add to the ongoing success of the NAPF and that he will ensure the views of our members continue to be heard in Whitehall, Westminster and Brussels.”