NEST, the UK workplace pension scheme, has named Ian Cornelius as interim chief executive officer, with effect from 1 May 2024, as Helen Dean prepares to leave her post at the scheme on 30 April.

Cornelius will also join NEST’s board and take on the role of accounting officer.

Prior to this appointment, Cornelius served as interim group CEO at Skipton Building Society. He was previously Skipton’s commercial and strategy director for a decade.

NEST said Cornelius joins the organisation at a time of “continued growth and customer-orientated transformation”.

Dean announced her plans to step down last July after nearly eight years in the role. Prior to her departure, NEST said there will be a “short handover period” before she leaves at the end of the month.

Cornelius’s appointment is expected to be for a period of about 12 months while a permanent CEO is recruited and onboarded.

Brendan McCafferty, chair of NEST, said: “I’m delighted to welcome Ian Cornelius as our interim CEO.”

McCafferty said that Cornelius’s expertise and insight will be “very valuable” as NEST builds on “our achievements and accelerate our purpose-driven plans that put our low to middle-income members at the heart of everything we do”.

He added that Dean’s “tireless focus on improving financial outcomes for all” will transform the financial resilience and retirement of millions of citizens across the UK.

“She leaves an incredible and long-lasting legacy,” McCafferty said.

Cornelius said: “I’m excited to be joining NEST as it continues to develop. The organisation has a unique and purposeful place in the sector and I’m looking forward to supporting the next phase of its future.”

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