Bernadette Kenny, chief executive of the Church of England Pensions Board (CEPB), has died aged 60.
Kenny joined the CEPB as chief executive in February 2011 after a career in the civil service.
During her tenure, she saw through significant changes to the CEPB itself and to the National Church Institutions, a group of entities which include The Church Commissioners. A statement from the Church said the changes had ensured these institutions were well-placed to serve it for years to come.
Jonathan Spencer, chair, CEPB, said: “We have lost more than a brilliant colleague, we have lost a force for good.”
He continued: “The issuance of the £100m housing bond, changes to the retirement housing scheme, and innovative funding arrangements to derisk the pension schemes are just a few examples of the legacy she leaves behind.”
Kenny was also a champion of greater diversity and inclusion in the workplace, recently helping to launch a network for black, Asian and minority ethnic colleagues.
She studied law at the University of Manchester before qualifying as a barrister. She then joined the civil service as a government legal adviser, working in a range of legal, policy and operational management roles, before becoming change director at the then-Department for Constitutional Affairs.
Kenny spent four months as interim chief executive of the Royal Parks, before moving to HM Revenue and Customs as director general for personal tax in 2005.
Spencer is overseeing interim arrangements for the leadership of the CEPB.
The CEPB, which provides pensions for clergy and church workers, currently manages funds totalling £2.3bn (€2.6bn), and its schemes have over 38,000 members.
It made a record investment return of 21.1% for the 2016 calendar year.