The bank said that the appointment cements its commitment to socially conscious operations.
Heritage Bank has announced that Andrew Masci will fill the newly created role of ESG and sustainability manager.
Mr Masci has over 15 years of experience across environmental management, corporate sustainability and ESG, and in the new role, will drive the development of the bank’s environmental, social and governance framework as its first dedicated ESG resource.
This will include the delivery of improved governance and reporting of Heritage’s ESG performance and projects such as carbon neutral certification.
Mr Masci most recently worked as a senior environmental sustainability specialist at Airservices Australia where he helped develop and implement the company’s environmental sustainability strategy and action plan.
Heritage CEO Peter Lock highlighted the importance of ESG across the bank’s operations moving forward and noted that acting responsibly and ethically had always been inherent in its activities as a customer-owned bank.
“Andrew Masci brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to this newly created ESG role,” Mr Lock said.
“His appointment reinforces Heritage’s commitment to creating long-term value for our members by proactively working towards a more socially conscious and environmentally sustainable future.”
Commenting on his own appointment, Mr Masci said he was looking forward to growing the capability and understanding of the importance of ESG to the firm’s staff and members.
He also drew attention to the increased need for sustainability as societal sentiment shifts to being more climate aware with a focus on responsible banking.
“For the banking sector, there has been a significant shift to grow and manage ESG risk, as well as identify and implement opportunities,” he said.
“I have always believed that real change towards a net zero future begins with the finance industry and being able to drive this change at Heritage was an opportunity I could not pass up.
“Through our commitment to incorporating ESG practices, Heritage has another opportunity to show members it is a responsible and trustworthy institution. This fits perfectly with the ethos of Heritage as a customer-owned bank.”
In April, Heritage Bank and People’s Choice Credit Union confirmed their intention to proceed with merger plans after completing an extensive due diligence process.
The proposed merger would create one of the largest customer-owned banking organisations in the country with 720,000 members and total assets worth more than $22.5 billion.
It remains subject to regulatory and member approval. If members vote in favour, the two firms expect that the merged organisation would be established early next year.
Jon Bragg is a journalist for Momentum Media's Investor Daily, nestegg and ifa. He enjoys writing about a wide variety of financial topics and issues and exploring the many implications they have on all aspects of life.