Toronto Star

Sun Life Financial chief executive officer Dean Connor will retire next year and chief financial officer Kevin Strain will take the insurance company’s helm.

Current chief executive will retire next August


Sun Life Financial Inc. said Dean Connor will retire as chief executive officer next year, and chief financial officer Kevin Strain will take the insurance company’s helm.

Strain, 54, will join the board of Toronto-based Sun Life in February, taking the title of president as well. When Connor, 64, retires in August, Strain will become CEO.

“In his14 years at Sun Life and nearly10 years as president and CEO, Dean retires after a distinguis­hed career where he transforme­d Sun Life to become one of the top insurance and asset-management companies in the world,” chair Bill Anderson said in a statement Wednesday.

Strain joined Sun Life in 2002 when it acquired Clarica, where he had worked since 1997. In addition to experience running Sun Life’s individual insurance and investment business in Canada, he launched Sun Life Global Investment­s — now known as SLGI Asset Management — and expanded Sun Life Asia into Vietnam and Malaysia.

Strain will continue to serve as CFO until a replacemen­t is found.

“While he’s currently CFO, he has done a lot of work in operations,” John Aiken, an analyst at Barclays Plc, said in an interview.

“So he has seen a wide breadth of the operation and I think he’s well-suited to fill Dean’s shoes.”

Sun Life shares have more than tripled since December 2011, when Connor became CEO, outperform­ing the 86 per cent gain in the S&P/TSX Composite Financials Sector Index.

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