Chief Executive announced for Australia's international finance centre

Thursday, 8 March 2012  Features

Banking and finance law specialist Ros Grady has been appointed as the inaugural Chief Executive of the Centre for International Finance and Regulation (CIFR), a consortium of leading Australian and international universities and research centres. She will take up her appointment on March 19.

Sponsored by the Commonwealth and NSW governments, the Centre was established last year to assist government, regulators and industry to meet emerging challenges and opportunities in the financial sector through world-class research and educational activities.

The appointment was announced by the Centre's chairman Peter Mason and Professor Fred Hilmer, Vice-Chancellor of the University of New South Wales, the lead institution for the Centre.

Ms Grady has had a distinguished legal career. She was formerly the Partner in Charge of the Melbourne office of Mallesons Stephen Jacques (now King & Wood Mallesons), where she ran the Financial Market Regulation Practice Group.

Since 2010 she has worked as an international legal consultant to the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and other leading international financial institutions on reforms to improve access to finance in developing markets.

Ms Grady holds a current appointment as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Sydney and is Chair of the Human Rights Law Centre.

Welcoming the appointment, Mr Mason said: "I am confident that as the Centre's inaugural Chief Executive, Ros will help position CIFR as an academic centre of excellence and an international leader in innovative financial market developments and financial system regulation."

The Minister for Financial Services and Superannuation, Bill Shorten, said: "Ros Grady's experience in both the commercial sector and academia provides her with a strong background to lead the Centre. The CIFR was a recommendation arising from the Johnson review and I am confident that it will strengthen Australia's position as a financial centre."

NSW Deputy Premier and Minister for Trade and Investment Andrew Stoner also welcomed the appointment.

"Ros Grady will bring strong international experience, including expertise in development finance, to her role as Chief Executive," Mr Stoner said.

"The NSW Government wants to position Sydney as a global financial capital and regional centre for international development finance and CIFR's presence in Sydney helps us achieve this goal."

Mr Mason and Professor Hilmer paid tribute to outgoing Interim Director Mr John Trowbridge for his work in establishing the Centre, building relationships with consortium partners and key industry stakeholders and initiating the Centre's research program. Mr Trowbridge has led the Centre since August 2011.


The Federal Government has committed $12 million over four years to establish the Centre for International Finance and Regulation (CIFR), with the NSW Government providing an additional $6 million. A further $6 million has come from corporate sources and partner institutions. The Centre will also receive $17 million of in-kind support from partner institutions and further funding is expected as the Centre develops.

The new Centre brings together some of the world's leading experts on finance and regulation. Foundation partners are: Six leading Australian universities, each with prestigious international research reputations in finance, law and economics - UNSW; the University of Sydney; Macquarie University; University of Technology, Sydney; the University of Melbourne; and the Australian National University
Two Sydney-based, internationally distinguished capital markets research and development centres - the Capital Markets Cooperative Research Centre and the Securities Industry Research Centre of Asia-Pacific
Two of the leading finance research centres in the world, NYU's Salomon Centre and Volatility Institute, and UCLA's Fink Centre - through these institutions the Centre will have an active collaboration with three Nobel Laureates
Industry participants that have already committed to support the Centre are the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Macquarie Group and KPMG.

The Centre's high powered board is led by Mr Peter Mason as Chairman. Other members are Federal Treasury Secretary Dr Martin Parkinson; chairman of the NSW Innovation Council and managing director of Morgan Stanley Australia, Mr Steven Harker; chairman of the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority, Dr John Laker; and the final appointment, Group Chief Risk Officer of the Commonwealth Bank, Mr Alden Toevs.

The board also include four nominees of the major partner universities: for UNSW, Professors Fred Hilmer and Alec Cameron, Dean of the Australian School of Business; for Sydney University, Vice-Chancellor Dr Michael Spence; and for Macquarie University, Vice-Chancellor Professor Stephen Schwartz.

The CIFR is located at UNSW's CBD campus at 1 O'Connell Street in Sydney.

Media contact: Judy Brookman, UNSW Director of Communications, (02) 9385 3249 0421 061 251