Pro Bono Financial Advice Network appoints chair and deputy chair

Nicola Beswick
Pro Bono Financial Advice Network - Chair
Date: 8 October 2021
Position: Chair
By Elizabeth Fry

The Pro Bono Financial Advice Network has appointed existing board members Nicola Beswick as chair, and Natalie Kleibert as deputy chair.

Beswick succeeds Nick Hakes, who has stepped down as chair after four years of service but will stay on as Treasurer.

Beswick and Kleibert would be responsible for leading the network into the next phase of its purpose - improving the financial wellbeing of Australians living with serious illness and/or disability by providing pro bono financial advice.

Western Australian financial adviser, Stephen Knight, has also joined the board.

Beswick said: "I am privileged to take on the role of chair of PFAN. As a financial adviser I understand the many small, yet powerful actions that people can take to change their financial future, and by their very nature, the course of their lives".

Established in 2014, advisers connected to PFAN provide quality financial advice to improve the sense of security for clients.

In 2016, PFAN partnered with MS Queensland to provide pro bono financial advice to people with MS who had identified financial advice as one of their most needed services. PFAN has also formed a partnership with MS Limited, who provide services to those located in Victoria, NSW, ACT and Tasmania.

Beswick, a financial adviser said supporting people, particularly when they are experiencing a health crisis, highlights the importance of the work of advisers.

"I have a deep personal understanding of this as my dad was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis many years ago," she said. "An income protection policy changed his financial future. This is why I am passionate about leading PFAN and the work we do to support the MS community."

During the pandemic this year, 17 clients have been connected with a PFAN adviser.

"It is pleasing to see we are connecting individuals who are living with multiple sclerosis, who cannot otherwise afford or access financial advice, with a PFAN adviser," Beswick added.

"We have much more to do, to continue to promote the significant difference that financial advice can make, and to inspire other partners and advisers to join us on our important mission." 
"I welcome any adviser who wants to help someone in need to get in touch with us and find out how little of their own time it can take to support just one more person. They will be giving that person vital financial advice at a time when they need it. It's often a small contribution that makes a massive difference."

Other board members include: Paul Harding-Davis, Brad Fox, Kate Humphries and Niall McConville.