Garry Weaven Emerging Trustee Scholarship

Applications are now closed for 2024. 

Application form
Garry Weaven (scholarship).jpg

Applications are now closed for 2024

In 2019, with the support of the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU), IFM Investors launched the Garry Weaven Emerging Trustee Scholarship Program. The Scholarship recognises Garry’s commitment to the interests of working people and his contribution to the Australian pension system.

The 12-month program aims at to equip new and emerging trustee directors with a strong understanding of the purpose of the pension system, and the duties, legislative and otherwise, of directors in the $1.2 trillion profit-to-member pension sector.

Garry Weaven is one of the architects of Australia’s pension system and a leader of the industry pension and trade union movements. Whilst Assistant Secretary of the Australian Council of Trade Unions, Garry helped develop the structure and encouraged the establishment of many of the pension funds that today look after the retirement savings of over half of the Australian workforce. Garry was a founder and the inaugural Chair of IFM Investors.




IFM is proud to support this scholarship in recognition of Garry Weaven’s commitment to the profit-to-member ethos and his passion for making a difference in the lives of working people. It will continue Garry’s legacy, developing new generations of incoming leaders for the profit-to-member sector.

Cath Bowtell
Chair, IFM Investors

What the scholarship includes

Up to four scholarships are offered annually. Each recipient receives skills-based training and mentoring to help ensure they are board-ready. The scholarship provides detailed insights into the duties of pension fund trustee directors, the history of the profit-to-member pension fund sector, as well as facilitating exploration of the ways in which the sector can continue to demonstrate best practice for members.

Some of the activities offered as part of the Garry Weaven Emerging Trustee Scholarship program include:

  • Enrolment in the Harvard University Trustee Leadership Forum (usually held in July)

  • Attendance at the ACTU Super Trustees Forum

  • Enrolment in the SMCA Trustee Director Course

  • Allocation to a suitable mentor

  • Networking opportunity with previous winners of the scholarship and the opportunity to meet with Garry Weaven

* Economy airfares and accommodation are covered as part of the scholarship. Additional expenses such as insurance and other incidentals are required to be arranged by participants.  

The Garry Weaven Scholarship is an invaluable opportunity for emerging pension trustees to equip themselves with the knowledge and skills that they need to be effective custodians of workers’ retirement savings. Industry pension funds were built by union pioneers like Garry Weaven and the ACTU is proud to support trustees to uphold and advance this world-class retirement system.

Joseph Mitchell
Assistant Secretary, Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU)
Joseph Mitchell (website).jpg

More details

All applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • Be trustee director of a profit-to-member pension fund or identified by a sponsoring organisation as an incoming director. (Member and employer representative directors, as well as independent directors, are eligible.)

  • Have an endorsement letter from a profit-to-member fund or a sponsoring organisation/union/employer association.

  • Be in the first term of a director appointment to a profit-to-member pension fund or (in the case of potential employer or employee representative directors, identified by a sponsoring organisation as a director nominee).

NB:  ACTU Office Holders and IFM employees are ineligible to apply.  

Click here to open the Application Form.

Submit your application form and any questions via email: 

Other Information

  • Applications close 16 February 2024.

  • A selection panel will review all applications and successful applicants will be notified shortly thereafter.  


  • Dean Brakell, GAIST, First Super, Trustee Director

  • Helen Cooney, GAIST, Rest, Trustee Director

  • Emeline Gaske, GAIST, HESTA, Trustee Director

  • Sharife Rahmani, Equip Super, Trustee Director



  • Imogen Beynon, Hostplus, Trustee Director

  • Nick McIntosh, TWU Super, Alternate Trustee Director

  • Anastasia Polites, LegalSuper, Trustee Director

  • Casey Thompson, First Super, Trustee Director



  • Dahlia Khatab, TelstraSuper, Trustee Director

  • Emma Thornton, Statewide Super, Trustee Director

  • Robyn Burns, First Super, Trustee Director

  • Travis Bates, Aware Super, Trustee Director