Welcome to our new website.

Please note our navigation has changed, so any bookmarks that you have to pages on our site will need to be updated. Subscribers won’t be affected. If you have any queries or issues please contact [email protected]

Your browser is not supported

Our website does not support the browser you are using. For a better browsing experience update to a compatible browser like the latest browsers from Chrome, Firefox and Safari.

New Reserve Bank Assistant Governor appointed, completing Executive Leadership Team

Karen Silk has been appointed as the Assistant Governor / General Manager of Economics, Financial Markets and Banking at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand – Te Pūtea Matua.

Karen Silk has been appointed as the Assistant Governor / General Manager of Economics, Financial Markets and Banking at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand – Te Pūtea Matua.

Ms Silk is a highly experienced financial services executive, currently a general manager with Westpac New Zealand.

Ms Silk fills the role previously held by Christian Hawkesby, who became Deputy Governor of RBNZ in January 2022.

Governor Adrian Orr says he is delighted to have Karen’s leadership and experience in such an important role at Te Pūtea Matua.

“Ms Silk has a wealth of leadership experience in banking. She has been a senior leader across retail and wholesale banking, wealth management, financial market infrastructure and payment systems,” Mr Orr says. “These are all areas where the RBNZ has significant projects underway.”

“Karen is steeped in climate change and risk management, including co-chair of the Sustainable Finance Forum,” Mr Orr says. “She is a respected leader in the banking sector.”

Ms Silk will take up the role at the Reserve Bank in coming months, with a start date to be confirmed in due course.

The role of Assistant Governor / General Manager of Economics, Financial Markets and Banking is also a member of the Monetary Policy Committee.

Within the last month, three other Assistant Governor appointments have made to the RBNZ, so with the appointment of Ms Silk, all eight Executive Leadership roles are now filled. Five of them are existing senior staff at the Bank.

The recruitment is progressing well to appoint a new Director of Economics / Chief Economist, to replace Yuong Ha, who will leave RBNZ in March, after the February Monetary Policy Statement.

Meanwhile, Nigel Prince has been appointed to a newly-created fixed term position of Strategic Advisor to the Governor. Mr Prince, who will be a member of the Executive Leadership Team (ELT) has been RBNZ’s Business Services Improvement Programme director for the last year, and brings significant leadership and change experience from the public and private sectors.

Executive Leadership Team Structure

SLT structure org chart

  • Governor / Chief Executive
    Adrian Orr
    • Strategic Advisor to the Chief Executive
      Nigel Prince
    • Assistant Governor
      General Manager Strategy, Governance and Sustainability
      Simone Robbers
    • Assistant Governor
      General Manager Risk, Compliance and Legal Services (CRO)
      Sarah Owen
    • Assistant Governor
      General Manager Transformation, Innovation, People & Culture
      Juliet Tainui-Hernandez
    • Assistant Governor
      General Manager Money Group
      Karen Silk
    • Assistant Governor
      General Manager Information, Data and Analytics
      Kate Kolich
    • Deputy Governor
      General Manager Financial Stability Group
      Christian Hawkesby
    • Assistant Governor
      General Manager Digital Solutions and Security (CSO)
      John McDermott
    • Assistant Governor
      General Manager Finance and Commercial Operations
      Greg Smith


More information

Karen Silk profile

Executive Leadership Team profiles

Monetary Policy Committee

Media Release: RBNZ Senior Leadership Team structure

Media contact

James Weir
Senior Adviser External Stakeholders
DDI: +64 4 471 3962 | MOB: 021 103 1622
Email: [email protected]