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Our People

Tim Grafton

Chief Executive

Tim Grafton became Chief Executive of the Insurance Council in November 2012. Tim has extensive experience in providing strategic, policy and communications advice to public and private sector leaders. He was an executive director of a leading market research company prior to taking up his position with ICNZ. 

Tim has a strong understanding of the machinery of government, having been an adviser to former Prime Ministers and Ministers of Finance as well as leading private companies. He has extensive knowledge of post-disaster recovery issues and insurance regulation.

He is a Chartered Member of the Institute of Directors and holds several governance roles. He is on the Executive Committee of the Global Federation of Insurance Associations, Chairs the Code Compliance Committee of the Fair Insurance Code, is the former Chair of the Representative Users Group of the Deep South Science Challenge which focuses on research to adapt to climate change, and is on the New Zealand Advisory Board of the Australia and New Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance and the Advisory Board of Victoria University, Wellington’s Chair in the Economics of Disasters.  

Jane Brown

Legal Counsel

Jane joined ICNZ as Legal Counsel in 2017. As well as being responsible for legal issues throughout the organisation, she oversees the liability, cyber and travel committees.

Prior to working at ICNZ, Jane worked in local government insurance, with a focus on cover for liability and underground infrastructure.

Jane has an LLB and a Bachelor of Arts majoring in French, is a Senior Associate of the Australian and New Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance, and is a Barrister and Solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand.  She is currently working towards a Master of Laws from the University of Auckland.

Sarah Knox

Consumer Affairs Manager 

Sarah Knox joined the Insurance Council in 2015 as Communications Manager and took up a new role as Consumer Affairs Manager in 2020. 

Sarah has 20 years' communications and issues management experience across a range of sectors.

The Consumer Affairs role is responsible for working with the general insurance sector to improve customer outcomes, providing consumer views to members, and improving the financial capability of youth and people with vulnerabilities.  Sarah also runs the industry’s Personal Lines (home and contents) and Employment and Education committees and takes a leading role in coordinating the insurance industry’s response to emergency events..

She holds a MSc (Distinction) in Responsible Business Practice from the University of Bath UK and a Bachelor of Management Studies (Honours) from the University of Waikato.

John Lucas

Insurance Manager

John Lucas joined ICNZ in 1996 as Insurance Manager. He is responsible for facilitating a number of technical working committees. He takes a leading role in coordinating the insurance industry's response to emergency events.

John began his insurance career with NZI in the early eighties, specialising in farm insurance and commercial property underwriting. He then moved to the UK where he worked for a number of broker firms before specialising in insolvency insurance placement in the London and Sydney insurance markets.

John is a Senior Associate of the Australian and New Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance.

Leah McNeil

Communications Manager

Leah joined ICNZ in November 2019. As Communications Manager she is responsible for the management of ICNZ’s image and reputation through its communications, media engagement and work with members.

Leah studied at Victoria University and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English and Art History. Working in New Zealand and the UK her career spans almost 20 years. She has experience providing strategic corporate communications with specific skills in reputation and crisis management, media liaison, internal communications and stakeholder engagement. Prior to ICNZ Leah was the Communications Manager for a global life insurance company.


Nick Whalley

Regulatory Affairs Manager

Nick joined ICNZ as Regulatory Affairs Manager in 2020 and oversees the regulations committee.

Prior to joining ICNZ, Nick worked in product and segment management roles at a New Zealand insurer and has been involved in the development of financial lines and Cyber Liability products and rewriting a suite of commercial policy wordings in plain English.  Previously Nick worked as a civil litigator at two national firms and for government departments.

Nick has an LLB (Hons) and a Bachelor of Arts majoring in History and Political Science and is a Senior Associate of the Australian and New Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance.


Yvonne Wynyard

ICR Manager

Yvonne joined ICNZ in April 2018 as manager of the Insurance Claims Register (ICR).

Yvonne graduated with a Master of Training Development and Bachelor of Administrative Leadership from the University of New England, Sydney, Australia. She spent 22 years with the New Zealand Army as an intelligence practitioner, trainer and manager and a further 9 years with ACC in which she developed and implemented their intelligence capability, including database design and training.

Yvonne’s role is to provide oversight of the ICR, liaise with internal and external stakeholders, provide analytical support to ICR members and manage fraud related issues in the insurance industry. She is also the Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB) Manager.