The Insurance Council of Australia has appointed Richard Shields as general manager of government and stakeholder relations, effective 17 June, 2013.
He will be responsible for managing key stakeholder relationships and engaging with all levels of government.
Shields has two decades of experience in public affairs-related roles. He was most recently the external relations manager of ASX-listed company Metgasco.
Prior to that he was an adviser to the Minister for Sport and Tourism Hon Andrew Thomson MP and for Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts Senator the Hon Helen Coonan; public affairs director for the Australian Hotels Association (WA); deputy state director and director of party affairs for the Liberal Party (NSW).
ICA CEO Rob Whelan said Shields brought an insider’s knowledge of the challenges and complexities of politics to the ICA. He said Shields would also complement the organisation’s knowledge of the legislative and regulatory processes of government.
“Richard joins the ICA at a critical time. We have a Federal election looming, plus many issues and challenges on the legislative front at federal and state level. His skills and strong political networks with the main political parties will immediately prove valuable,” Whelan said.
Shields added: “The insurance industry plays such a critical role in the effective functioning of any economy, and I am excited by the opportunity to further reinforce this fact to key decision makers.”
ICA President Mark Milliner said: “Forging strong and collaborative relationships with all sides of politics and with the senior ranks of member companies is at the heart of this role, and Richard’s political, business and communications acumen made him the ideal candidate.”