Senior Leadership Team

Mike Jones


Chief Executive Officer

Mike Jones joined Lifetime Group in May 2013 as CFO and was appointed CEO in late 2015.

A Canterbury man, and a commerce graduate from Canterbury University, Mike has an extensive background in business management much of it within the New Zealand primary and export sector. He has a reputation for strategic leadership and as a change agent and brings to Lifetime a refreshing perspective.

In the role of CEO he has built around him a strong leadership team from both within and outside of the Financial Services sector. That team is re-defining the focus of the group around the client and the quality and breadth of service. He is intent on realising the company’s stated strategic focus for “Personal Financial Design” – a client centric strategy that encompasses all the capability Lifetime has built to date and a lot that is now being added.

Married to Sue for over 30 years and based in the Scarborough Hills above Taylors Mistake Mike spends his recreation time biking and walking the hills or paddling the waves. Mike has 3 adult daughters and two grandchildren.

Heather Bakkenes


National Operations Manager

Born and raised in Lyttelton, Heather has been with the Lifetime Group since its inception.

With over 30 years in the fire and general insurance industry, Heather has held a range of positions with both underwriters and brokers and strives to ensure that customers receive the best level of service and advice from our brokers and support staff.

Heather enthusiastically works with the operations team to achieve the very best outcome for our Lifetime clients. Out of work, Heather takes a keen interest in her 2 grown up children’s sports activities, likes to relax in the garden and spend time with family.

Kat McCorkindale


Group Marketing Manager
MBA

Kat brings to the Lifetime team a wealth of experience in brand and marketing management with a focus on client experience, digital technologies and data-driven decisions. With a passion for business, Kat has established and managed number of companies in marketing, retail and hospitality. She continues as a director of two organisations.

Kat graduated with a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Canterbury University in 2013 and finds value in the application of this knowledge on a daily basis.

At Lifetime she relishes the opportunity to assist Kiwis in growing and protecting their wealth through smarter financial planning.

Outside of work Kat enjoys keeping active with runs and walks on the many beautiful trails around New Zealand with her dog. On the weekend you may catch her pulling a pint or two of craft beer at her bar, mostly for herself.

Jon O'Connor


Regional Sales Manager - Northern, National Lending Manager
BBS, Dip. BS, AFA

Jon has been involved in the financial services industry for over 20 years both here and overseas. After university he ventured into banking and then insurance before traveling to London where he lived for a number of years, working and traveling. In 2003 Jon and his wife Anita returned to New Zealand and decided to make Tauranga their home. Here, Jon took a role as a Mortgage Adviser working alongside a leading real estate firm where he helped grow the operation. In 2007 Jon moved to become a Risk Adviser and at the same time his business entered into a joint venture with a leading general insurance brokerage to provide a full financial services offering to the market. For the past three years Jon was the General Manager for the business as it expanded around the country before it was merged with Lifetime.

Jon is an Authorised Financial Adviser, and as a member of Financial Advice New Zealand (FANZ) is well placed given his experience to understand the importance of the Client and Adviser relationship.

Jon and Anita have two boys, Dan and Matt. Jon is keen on the outdoors and all sports, having played rugby and cricket, although is more of a 'spectator' these days, but is still involved through the coaching of his sons teams when needed. He also enjoys fishing and golf, when he can find the time, otherwise Jon is happy when with family and friends sampling craft beer and cooking in his pizza over.

John Ashby


Regional Sales Manager - Central, National Groups Manager
AFA

John has been a vibrant part of the New Zealand insurance industry since he began his career in 1990. During this time he has held numerous roles and gained an extensive knowledge of the many aspects of insurance. John became a part of Lifetime in 2012, bringing with him a team of skilled advisers and administrators who had worked under his leadership at his previous company.

Throughout his career, John has always had a passion for mentoring younger advisers. In his position as National Sales Manager he has been able to implement a nation-wide training scheme, helping Lifetime’s newest recruits become knowledgeable advisers with a strong commitment to long-term customer service.

Even after 26 years in the insurance industry, John is still excited by the prospects that it can offer and his enthusiasm for the work can be felt throughout the Lifetime offices.

John is married to Anne and together they have three grown children. In his spare time he loves to sail small boats around Worser bay and play a bit of rhythm guitar with his band.

Travis Hamilton


Regional Sales Manager - Southern, Adviser Development Manager
BCom Finance/Economics

Travis is now the adviser development manager at Lifetime Group. A new position created to help support the growth of advisers and their success at Lifetime Group. His background includes starting out as an adviser in the risk insurance sector after graduating from University with a bachelor of commerce, majoring in Finance and Economics.

After joining Lifetime in 2011, he went on to start a company in 2014 where he has great success with the recruitment and training of new advisers. Travis soon discovered this was where his real passion was. Lifetime came up with a role to incorporate Travis and his team back into the fold and establish a position of an adviser development manager. With advisers nationwide Travis now helps advisers, being one himself, to grow and achieve what they have set out to in their own careers.

Travis is also a member of MDRT, a worldwide organisation for financial advisers with the focus to promote and deliver sound advice to clients by adding value through exemplary performance and the highest standards of ethics, knowledge, service and productivity. This experience as a business owner and an adviser helps Travis to remain relevant to the adviser and pass on his feedback to help grow others to achieve success in this industry.

A Christchurch man, born and bred. Travis attended St Andrew’s College before attending Otago and Canterbury University. His hobbies include playing rugby, tennis, travel, spending time with family and friends, investing.

Julie Fisher


HR Training & Development Manager
DipGrad in Psychology, Bachelor of Applied Science and Diploma in Business Management.

Julie joins the Lifetime team in 2017 into the newly created Training and Development Manager role. Julie has worked across a broad spectrum of markets in Human Resources from Social Services, Hospitality, Mining and Fast Moving Consumer Goods. Julie is an Otago University graduate with a DipGrad in Psychology, Bachelor of Applied Science and Diploma in Business Management. She has a positive approach to growing people to reach their full potential and a very enthusiastic manner of working with all people across the business.

Julie is married, with two daughters and lives in the Tai Tapu area.

Gemma Shea


Finance Manager

Gemma joined Lifetime as an accountant in 2014. Coming from an audit background, having spent nearly four years at Audit NZ, Gemma brings a range of experience in budgeting, financial management, information systems, system processes including controls and risk analysis, planning and reporting and supervising audit teams.

Working at Lifetime, Gemma now deals with a mix of financial reporting, management accounting, analytical accounting and project accounting. Needless to say, no two days are the same - “Every day brings new challenges given the complexity of the insurance industry as well as working in a brokerage and sales based environment, which makes it a fantastic place to work”.

Gemma loves travel and the outdoors. At the weekend, you can find usually find her up a mountain, either hiking or skiing, or at the beach. She also has a passion for photography.