Launch of 2022 Financial Resilience Index

4 min read
February 24, 2022

Research Launch: Financial Resilience Index 2022

The Financial Resilience Index is a tracking survey of New
Zealanders’ views on five key financial resilience indicators.

Our expert panel discussed the findings from the latest Index in the broader context of the pandemic, the great resignation and fears of rising inflation, and the implications for financial wellbeing and the wellbeing of New Zealanders as a whole.



• Mary Jo Vergara, Economist, Kiwibank
• Ryan Bessemer, CEO, Trustees Executors
• Dr. Jarrod Haar, Professor of Human Resource Management, AUT
• Trish Oakley, Head of Summer, Forsyth Barr
• Vicki Caisley, Chief People & Strategy Officer, Southern Cross Health Society
• Adam Boyd, Executive General Manager, Private Banking, ASB

FRI Speakers composite image updated Vicki Caisley

Speaker bios:

Mary Jo Vergara, Economist, Kiwibank
Mary Jo Vergara joined the Kiwibank economics team in 2019. Mary Jo has a keen interest in how the Kiwi economy fits within the global landscape. Her research ranges from macroeconomics to finance to New Zealand’s economic history. She is skilled in quantitative analysis, including statistical and econometric modelling. Prior to joining Kiwibank, Mary Jo worked in economic consulting as a research analyst following five years of university study. Mary Jo holds a Master’s in Economics from the University of Auckland.

Ryan Bessemer, CEO, Trustees Executors
Ryan was appointed to the Board of Trustees Executors as Executive Director in October 2019 and joined Trustees Executors as Chief Executive Officer in April 2018. Previously he served as COO of Equity Trustees, Australia’s largest independent trustee company.
Ryan has over 20 years of experience in the financial services sector, with a strong focus on general and technology management, investment operations, project management and people management. He has a proven track record in delivering successful business growth through organic growth initiatives and M&A.

Dr. Jarrod Haar, Professor of Human Resource Management, AUT
Professor Jarrod Haar (PhD) is a Professor of Human Resource Management in the Department of Management and has tribal affiliations of Ngati Maniapoto and Ngati Mahuta. In 2018, Professor Haar was appointed as a Member of the Marsden Fund Council and is the Convenor of the Marsden Economics and Human Behavioural Sciences panel. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand Te Apārangi (2020), a Research Fellow of the Australia & New Zealand Academy of Management (since 2012), and Chartered Fellow of the Human Resource Institute of New Zealand (HRINZ). He won the inaugural HRINZ HR Researcher of the Year Award in 2016. In April 2016, he became the Deputy Director of the NZ Work Research Institute. In 2017, he won the Faculty of Business and Economics (AUT) Individual Researcher of the Year. His research approach spans broadly across a wide range of management topics, but with a strong focus on Human Resource Management and Organizational Behaviour.

Trish Oakley
Head of Summer, Forsyth Barr
Trish joined Forsyth Barr in 2000. She has over 20 years of experience in the financial services industry, having previously worked in banking prior to heading up Forsyth Barr’s Marketing division for over 15 years. Trish holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Otago University and is a member of the Institute of Directors (IoD), Otago-Southland Branch committee chair and a representative on the IoD’s National Council. She is currently a trustee of the Royal New Zealand Ballet, a council member of the University of Otago and a member of New Zealand Lotteries Commission. As Head of Summer, Trish is passionate about helping people get the most out of KiwiSaver.

Vicki Caisley, Chief People & Strategy Officer, Southern Cross Health Society
Southern Cross Health Society is NZ-owned and not-for-profit with over 860,000 members and accounting for 73% of NZ’s private health insurance claims. Vicki joined Southern Cross in 2013 and is their Chief People & Strategy Officer – taking on the people, internal communications, wellbeing, strategy and business transformation responsibilities. Before joining Southern Cross Vicki was Head of People & Culture for professional services firm Grant Thornton. Prior to this Vicki was self-employed for 7 years as an HR Consultant working across the Not for Profit, health, banking & finance and FMCG sectors.  Vicki was the New Zealand Human Resources Manager for AMP Banking, followed by several years at the Auckland District Health Board, managing HR for Women’s and Children’s Health. Outside of Southern Cross Vicki was Board Chair of a 1,000-student primary school for 7 years until 2019. She completed a two-year Executive MBA (Dist) with Massey University in 2013 and held a governance role as a Commissioner on the Board of the New Zealand Fire Service for five years until March 2016.

Adam Boyd, EGM Private Banking, Wealth and Insurance, ASB
Adam joined ASB in April 1995 as a Dealer in the Corporate and Commercial FX Sales team. Before being appointed Executive General Manager of Private Banking, Wealth and Insurance in 2016, Adam's roles at ASB included General Manager of Global Markets, Strategy and Product, General Manager of Worksmart and Chief Manager of Treasury and Financial Markets. Adam has over 25 years' experience in leading sales teams, with a specialist knowledge of global financial markets. Adam has a passion for protecting the environment, farming and agriculture, financial wellbeing, wealth management and asset management. As a leader, Adam believes that similar to the notion that we are only custodians of a business for a short period, managers will only lead people for a short window of their career. With this in mind, Adam's goal is to ensure that each person he leads goes away richer for their experiences at ASB. Adam is a Board member of the Financial Services Council and has a Bachelor of Commerce in Finance and Economics from the University of Auckland.

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About FSC Connect:

FSC Connect webinars are an online resource for members of the financial services community, designed to discuss and stimulate conversation on key issues, themes and topics affecting New Zealanders and financial services professionals.