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Board and Committees

Board

The Board is currently comprised of six Non-Executive Directors and three Executive Directors.

  • Joanna Young is the Chair
  • Fiona Gregory is the Senior Independent Director 
  • All Directors will be subject to re-election in 2019

The Directors’ CVs can be viewed below.

Committees

Much governance work is carried out in Committees. These Committees include both Directors and other Non-executives approved by the Board, supported and advised by management.

Follow the links to see the Terms of Reference and Membership of our 4 Board Committees and With-Profits Non-Executive Director.

Introducing your Board of Management

Joanna Young

Chair

Joanna Young

Chair

Appointed to the Board in May 2013, Joanna joined the Metropolitan Police in 1984 and feels privileged to have served London’s vibrant and multicultural communities in a variety of roles. She spent four years in Kent Police as a BCU Commander before returning ‘home’ to the Met in 2007 as a Chief Superintendent. In the last four years of her policing career she was the elected representative for the Superintendents’ Association in London supporting her colleagues in challenging and difficult times. She retired from policing in 2015 to start a new career in leadership training and development and coaching. She maintains close links with policing through her leadership work and Metfriendly.

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Tim Birse

Non-Executive Director

Tim Birse

Non-Executive Director

Appointed to the Board in May 2010, Tim is a qualified actuary. He is a strong supporter of the mutual life insurance and friendly society sector, having spent his entire working life at two mutual companies – firstly National Provident Institution and more recently at Reliance Mutual Insurance Society from where he retired in November 2015 after 27 years’ employment, including a period as chief actuary.  Both before and after retirement Tim has devoted a large part of his time to education of future generations of actuaries. Tim is currently playing a high-profile role in the current review of the actuarial profession’s education strategy.  He is an examiner for actuarial science courses at various UK and overseas universities and moderates courses for the Indian and South African actuarial associations.  In his spare time Tim is active as an Explorer Scout Leader and treasurer of his Parish Church.

 

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Kathy Byrne

Chief Executive Officer (designate)

Kathy Byrne

Chief Executive Officer (designate)

Kathy Byrne is currently Chief Financial Officer and Chief Risk Officer for Metfriendly and takes up the CEO role in January 2019. A qualified actuary, she has over 30 years’ experience in the insurance industry including Managing Director of Cardif Pinnacle’s investment business unit and prior to this Group Actuarial Director.

Outside the insurance world, she was involved in setting up a new savings business from scratch, which involved dealing with a range of stakeholders including IFAs and consumers. Kathy’s book “Where Have My Savings Gone?” provides savers with the knowledge they need to manage their savings effectively.

Kathy has an MBA from Henley Management College. She has served on the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries Council and is currently Chair of the profession’s Behavioural Finance For Actuaries working party.

She is a Non-Executive Director and shareholder of Alpasión Vineyard in Mendoza. She enjoys playing golf and skiing in her spare time.

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Janet Cassettari

Non-Executive Director

Janet Cassettari

Non-Executive Director

Appointed to the Board in May 2010, Janet has worked in the financial services sector for many years in a career encompassing a variety of roles and responsibilities both within the UK and internationally. She managed the UK operation of a European reinsurance company, has led a team in the global development of an insurance product and jointly owned and managed an organisation providing services within the annuity/longevity market.  Outside of financial services Janet enjoys writing short stories and thrives on challenges like running marathons. Janet has served on the Member Relations Committee, and its precursors, the Business Development and Marketing Committees, since 2007 and has been its Chair since July 2012.

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Ben Grainger

Chief Operating Officer

Ben Grainger

Chief Operating Officer

Ben’s background is in marketing for private and public sector organisations. He started his career with Metfriendly in 2014 heading up the Sales and Marketing team, a role in which he oversaw membership growth for the first time in many years, as well as record levels of investment in the Society’s With-Profits Fund. He is a full Board member and has served on the Risk & Investment Committee and the Member Relations Committee. Promoted to the role of Chief Operating Officer in 2018, he is responsible for the Member Services, IT, and People functions. Outside of work he is a keen runner and avid rugby fan.

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Fiona Gregory

Non-Executive Director

Fiona Gregory

Non-Executive Director

Appointed to the Board in April 2014 Fiona is the daughter and the wife of former Police Officers, both who served in Bedfordshire. She qualified as a Solicitor and Notary Public, specialising in commercial property and residential conveyancing. She has now ceased practising and provides business management consultancy services to legal firms and other businesses. Fiona was a Non-Executive Director with British Friendly Society Ltd for over 12 years, having previously been their legal advisor for over 10 years. She served the last three years as Chairman when she led the business through a period of transformational change, recruiting a new Chief Executive, other senior managers, restructuring the Board, installing a new computer system and launching new products. Fiona was Vice Chairman of bpha (Bedfordshire Pilgrims Housing Association) for over 5 years and stepped down as acting Chair at the end of January 2015.

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Graeme McAusland

Non-Executive Director

Graeme McAusland

Non-Executive Director

Appointed to the Board in August 2016, Graeme is a qualified actuary and is currently the Chief Executive at the Funeral Planning Authority. He has spent most of his working life in the life assurance industry and has held various senior roles including Chief Executive of a mutual insurer and UK Group Finance Director of another insurer. He holds another non-executive role with an AIM listed stockbroker where he chairs the Audit Committee. He has also been appointed as the independent Chair of the Audit Committee of an Academy in Croydon. In his spare time Graeme plays the cornet in a brass band.

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Mark Myers

Chief Executive

Mark Myers

Chief Executive

Mark has had a career of over 35 years in financial services and until December 2016 was Chief Executive of British Friendly Society.  Prior to this, he was Director of Partnerships at Liverpool Victoria Friendly Society and before that had a long career with Lloyds TSB Group.  Mark is now concentrating on having a number of non-exec roles and these have included roles at Holmesdale Building Society, Direct Life and Pensions and Jockey Club Racecourses. He is also a strategic adviser to LGT Vestra and a Governor at Kings School Ely. 

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Lee Schöpp

Non-Executive Director

Lee Schöpp

Non-Executive Director

Appointed to the Board in August 2016, Lee is a Chartered Accountant and also the Finance Director of mutual insurer British Friendly Society. Lee brings with him considerable strategic planning and execution experience gained over the past 20 years and was very proud to receive the New Chartered Director of the Year 2015 award from the Institute of Directors. He is a member of the Association of Financial Mutuals Development and Conference Committee and a fellow of the Institute of Directors. In addition to these roles Lee has also founded a successful micro-brewery operating in Bedfordshire.

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‘Very pleased with the service I’ve received to help me save money direct from my salary.’

DC Chris W, SO15

Very happy with the service. I have a number of policies for myself and my children.

Police Sergeant S Drysdale, DPS Borough Support

‘Hassle-free savings that are started every year on my behalf, without me having to call up.’

 

D.C. R McLaren, Hackney Borough Stations

Great opportunity for family members to be offered the same offers as members.

Miss A McLeary, ESB

‘I’ve used Metfriendly for the last 5 years and recently the money has gone towards a deposit for our house. I will be signing back up next year to help save towards my kids future.’

Mrs A Cooper, Met CC, Bow

‘I would recommend Metfriendly to everyone.’

Mrs V Thompson, Dagenham

‘I have always been pleased with the returns from my Metfriendly policies.’

Mr P Payne, Bordon

‘I’ve used Metfriendly for the last 5 years and recently the money has gone towards a deposit for our house which we are moving into next month. I will be signing back up next month to help save towards my kids future.’

 

Amanda Cooper (Met CC, Bow)

Good service – always very helpful and informative.

Miss J Coward, South Norwood, London