Our Story


Some of the first patients Dr. Bronwyn King cared for at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre were suffering from lung cancer. However, while doing her best to treat these people, Bronwyn was unaware she was also supporting the global production of cigarettes.

It was only during a meeting with a representative of her superannuation fund in 2010 that Bronwyn learnt some of her money was flowing to tobacco companies through the default option of her superannuation fund. “I thought it was a very bad fit for me as a cancer doctor. I had watched hundreds of people die from tobacco-related disease,” Bronwyn reflects.

In the knowledge that many of her colleagues would be similarly unhappy with their unwitting investment in the tobacco industry, Bronwyn approached First State Super which had shortly before merged with Health Super. Following numerous meetings and a presentation to the Board, First State Super undertook a detailed analysis of the issue and in 2012, proudly made the decision to go tobacco free.

Scores of coffees and countless boardroom presentations later, Bronwyn is delighted with the willingness of the finance industry to engage and act on this issue. The work of the Tobacco Free Portfolios now has a global focus.

In June 2015, Clare Payne – a lawyer with a background with a background in ethics in banking and finance – joined Tobacco Free Portfolios as Chief Operating Officer and Oceania Director.

In 2016, Dr Rachel Melsom joined Tobacco Free Portfolios as UK Director, with the generous support of Cancer Research UK.


Our People


Dr Bronwyn King, MBBS, FRANZCR

Founder and Chief Executive Officer
  • Radiation oncologist at The Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre (Honorary) and Epworth Healthcare, Victoria, Australia
  • Tobacco Control Ambassador for Cancer Council Australia
  • Recipient of the 2014 President’s Award for Leadership in Tobacco Control from the Thoracic Society of Australia and New Zealand
  • Named by Westpac and the Australian Financial Review as one of 2014’s 100 Women of Influence
  • Former elite swimmer
  • Served for ten years as Team Doctor of the Australian Swimming Team
  • Australia Day Ambassador
  • Ambassador Big Brother Big Sisters Australia
  • Fellow of Leadership Victoria’s Williamson Community Leadership Program
  • 2017 Inaugural Distinguished Fellow in a joint initiative with King’s College London and University of Melbourne
  • 2016 recipient of the Dr Bob Elphick Award for Tobacco Control by the Australian Council on Smoking and Health
  • 2015 VicHealth Award for Tobacco Control

Clare Payne

Chief Operating Officer
  • Consulting Fellow for Ethics in Banking and Finance, The Ethics Centre
  • Founder and Board Member of The Banking and Finance Oath (The BFO)
  • Working Group of the Financial Services Professional Board of Malaysia
  • Lecturer and Tutor, Macquarie University and The University of Melbourne
  • Former employment lawyer
  • Managed the Integrity Office of a global investment bank
  • Awarded the inaugural Robin Cosgrove Prize for Ethics in Finance in 2007
  • Recognised as a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader
  • Nominated for ‘Most Outstanding Thought Leader’ in Financial Services in FINSIA 125 Pinnacle Awards
  • Future Summit Leadership Awardee, Australian Davos Connection
  • Life Education Australia Board member
  • Former marathon swimmer
  • Named by Westpac and the Australian Financial Review as one of 2016’s 100 Women of Influence
  • 2015 Industry Advocacy Award for Women in Financial Services
  • 2014 World Economic Forum Young Global Leader

Dr Rachel Melsom MBBS, BSc.

UK Director
  • Practicing clinician in Elderly Care, Worthing Hospital, Sussex
  • Completed her first degree in Genetics (Honours), University College, London 1987
  •  Partner, Brunswick Group LLP, Advisory Firm, Critical and Corporate Communications
  • Founder Director Asset Media Consulting
  • Founder Director Medical Matrix Consulting
  • Business Leader for Founders 4 Schools

Governance –
Our Board


Mark Engel

  • Mark is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors with more than 30 years’ experience across the insurance, financial services, healthcare and higher education sectors
  • Mark has held senior executive roles with Mutual Community, HBA, National Mutual, AXA and Bupa
  • Currently Executive Director and Chief Marketing Officer at La Trobe University
  • Mark is a Director of St John Ambulance Australia (Vic) and St John Holdings Limited

David Rickards

  • David trained as an engineer and practised in Australia, Hong Kong and London
  • For over 16 years (until 2012), David was the Head of Research at Macquarie Bank
  • David co-founded Social Enterprise Finance Australia (SEFA) and continues to be an executive with the SEFA business
  • David is a Director of Bush Heritage Australia and the Australian Museum Foundation

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