New York Life hires BNY Mellon CCO Kevin Heine to head corporate comms

Heine officially starts in the role on August 22. He will report to Kelli Parsons, New York Life's chief communications and marketing officer.

NEW YORK: New York Life has hired Kevin Heine as head of corporate communications, a newly created role at the insurance company.

Heine officially starts in the role on August 22. He will report to Kelli Parsons, New York Life’s chief communications and marketing officer, according to a source familiar with the matter. With Heine’s hire, Parsons will continue to serve in her current capacity, an internal memo obtained by PRWeek explained. Parsons left her position at Fannie Mae as SVP and CCO to join New York Life in late 2014.

In his new role, Heine will have three direct reports: Jason Weinzimer, head of external communications; Laura Laub, head of internal communications; and Al Johnston, head of executive communications.

Reporting to Parsons are: Kari Axberg, head of brand strategy and experience; Ellen Kantro, head of multimedia and events; Erin Smale, head of digital strategy and planning; and Lisa Giesler, head of shared services.

Heine joins New York Life from BNY Mellon, where he was CCO. He has worked at BNY for almost 13 years, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Prior to that, he worked at the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association -- then known as TIAA—CREF, Prudential Financial, and Citigroup Global Security Services in a variety of comms leadership roles.

Under Parsons’ tenure, New York Life’s comms division has made a bid to tailor its strategy to "maturing millennials," she told PRWeek last year. At the same time, it retains its core audience of baby boomers and Gen Xers, using a mix of different media channels and messaging. New York Life has about 900,000 followers across Facebook and Twitter.

New York Life reported strong financial strength for 2015, with an $800 million increase in surplus and asset valuation reserve, setting a record high $22.7 billion, according to media reports.

Last year, BNY Mellon was battered by a spate of bad press after it agreed to a $714 million settlement for allegedly defrauding clients in foreign-exchange transactions over the course of a decade. As part of the agreement, the bank fired the executives responsible for the violations, including David Nichols, head of product management.

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