Defence Bank announces next CEO

Defence Bank Appointment CEO

Defence Bank has announced that former ANZ senior executive Roberto Scenna has been appointed as the mutual’s next chief executive.

Scenna, who joins the bank on 15 July, will replace Marnie Fletcher.

Fletcher stepped in as interim chief executive in March this year following the departure of David Marshall after six years at the helm.

Scenna joins Defence Bank from Catholic Church Insurance (CCI), an insurance firm owned by the Catholic Church, where he served nine years as chief executive.

Across his almost decade-long tenure with CCI, Scenna, his LinkedIn states, oversaw a more than doubling of the insurer’s revenue, from $180 million to around $400 million.

On the tech front, his tenure saw the introduction of a new analytics function, “to augment business performance (monitor and improve claims leakage, increase premium strength) and support better decision-making by clients on risk management”, a transformation of core systems, including finance, HR, asset management, and a new client portal.

CCI, however, has no doubt faced a turbulent recent history. The insurer, which is responsible for insuring Catholic entities, was forced into run-off in May 2023, effectively halting the issuing of new insurance policies, after it was overwhelmed by professional standards claims.

Before joining CCI, Scenna served in senior roles at ANZ across a 13-year tenure with the bank, including as chief executive of ANZ Trustees and managing director of its private wealth arm.

Defence Bank chair Bruce Murphy said he was “delighted to secure someone of Roberto’s calibre” to lead the bank.

“Roberto brings a wealth of experience and a results-driven member focus to the bank.

“Roberto not only has a strong pedigree in banking but a genuine commitment to people, building relationships and delivering outstanding member outcomes.

Murphy also acknowledged acting CEO Marnie Fletcher’s “dedication and commitment” to the role, “ensuring the bank is in a very strong position when Roberto commences”.

Commenting on his new role, Scenna said he “looked forward to working with the talented board, executive and all of the dedicated leaders and staff who are deeply connected to serving those in the Australian Defence Force that protect us.”

He also praised Fletcher and previous CEO David Marshall “for cementing such a strong purpose-driven culture for members and staff alike”.