Executive leadership.

An Executive Leadership Team comprising of the following members oversees the day-to-day operations and ongoing development of Defence Bank.


David Marshall.
BCom, Post Grad. Dip. Com, Executive Development Program.
Chief Executive Officer.
David Marshall

Skills and experience.
David commenced as Chief Executive Officer of Defence Bank in February 2018. He has initiated a major ‘member experience’ transformation program aimed at reducing member effort at every touchpoint.

David has spent 35 years in the financial services sector in Australia and New Zealand. During this time, he has led major retail and business banking divisions in major and regional banks.

Prior to his appointment as CEO of Defence Bank he was CEO of Hume Bank, a leading Mutual Bank in Regional NSW/Victoria. He is a passionate advocate for the member-owned banking sector and its role in the contemporary financial services landscape within Australia.

David grew up on a farming property in New Zealand. He studied at Lincoln College (Canterbury University), London Business School and Wharton Business School.


Dean Barton.
Chief Financial Officer.
Dean Barton

Skills and experience.
Dean joined Defence Bank as Chief Financial Officer in 2011. His primary responsibility is the bank’s financial and regulatory reporting, management reporting and budgeting, funding and capital management. He also acts as Company Secretary to Defence Bank.

Dean has more than 20 years’ local and international experience in financial roles including Financial Controller for ME Bank, and Asia-Pacific Regional Financial Controller for GMAC Financial Services.

Dean is a Fellow of CPA Australia and the Financial Services Institute of Australasia, and a graduate member of AICD. Dean holds a BCom from the University of Western Australia majoring in Accounting and Economics.


Celia Cannavan.
Dip. Finance Services, Dip. Training and Assessment, Executive Coach, GAICD.
Chief Lending Officer.
Celia Cannavan

Skills and experience.
Celia was appointed Chief Lending Officer in January 2017. She has responsibility for Defence Bank’s end-to-end Lending functions along with the Collections and Fraud portfolios.

Prior to joining Defence Bank, Celia held a number of senior leadership roles spanning areas of consumer banking, third-party distribution, transformation, training, operations and sales capability. She has more than 20 years experience in financial services. Qualifications include Executive Coach at the Institute of Executive Coaching and Leadership, and a graduate member of AICD.

This breadth of diverse expertise provides Celia with a unique and invaluable skillset when leading her teams to help deliver on Defence Bank’s strategic plan.


Dean Talbot.
Dip. Finance Services, Adv. Dip. Management, Dip. Retail Business Admin.
Chief Sales & Service Officer.
Dean Talbot

Skills and experience.
For the past six years, Dean has been responsible for leading Defence Bank’s member-facing distribution teams which encompass all branches and the Melbourne-based Contact Centre. The overarching aim of these teams is to maintain an absolute member-focused ethos during the implementation of products and processes.

With more than 20 years’ experience in banking and finance, Dean has held senior management and banking positions across both major and mutual institutions including NAB, where he held a number of leadership positions.

Dean is a former AFL-listed player with Geelong.


Linda Craven.
BSc, Post Grad. Dip. Computing, MBA, GAICD.
Chief Digital & Information Officer.
Linda Craven

Skills and experience.
Linda Craven became Chief Digital & Information Officer in August 2018. She brings with her more than 20 years’ experience in technology and consulting within the financial services sector.

Linda holds a Master of Business Administration, graduating with distinction from the New York Institute of Technology. She also holds a Graduate Diploma in Computing, a Bachelor of Science and is a graduate of AICD. Her previous work history saw her successfully lead teams and projects at ANZ, NAB, Ernst & Young Consulting and IBM Global Services delivering significant transformational outcomes.

Linda leads the Defence Bank’s technology strategy and platforms with a goal to making it easier for our members to bank with us, improving efficiencies and driving technology innovations.


Mano Simos.
BBus Accounting, Grad. Dip. Banking & Finance, GAICD.
Chief Risk Officer.
Mano Simos

Skills and experience.
Mano has been Chief Risk Officer at Defence Bank since October 2013. He is primarily responsible for the development and oversight of the Bank’s Risk & Compliance Management Framework. Mano leads a team who collaborates with executives and their teams providing guidance and advice on the implementation of these frameworks. This second line function remains independent of the business and provides the Board and the Risk & Compliance Committee with assurance and insights around the management of our current and emerging enterprise risks.

Mano was appointed Company Secretary in September 2016 and is secretary to the Risk & Compliance Committee, Governance & Remuneration Committee, and is a graduate member of the AICD.

Prior to joining Defence Bank, Mano worked at NAB - directly with the Business Banking CRO and with the Group Executive Business Banking as secretary to its Risk Committee and responsible for risk governance.


Kristen Bugeja.
Executive Manager – People & Culture.
Kristen Bugeja

Skills and experience.
Kristen Bugeja leads the People & Culture team at Defence Bank. She has more than 20 years’ experience in the financial services sector.

Kristen has had extensive experience in delivering the cultural change that underpins Defence Bank’s business strategy. She has successfully driven change across a range of people functions including career development, talent and leadership programs, and employee engagement.

Under her guidance, Defence Bank was a finalist in the Australian HR Awards 2017 for ‘Best Change Management Strategy’ and in the Australian HR Awards 2016 for ‘Employer of Choice’.

Kristen is a certified member of the Australian HR Institute.


Michael O'Reilly.
BA, Grad. Dip. Marketing.
Executive Manager - Product and Marketing.
Michael O'Reilly

Skills and experience.
Michael joined Defence Bank as Executive Manager of Marketing in December 2017. He brings with him more than 22 years of product and marketing experience within the financial services sector.

Prior to joining Defence Bank, Michael was responsible for developing marketing strategies across a range of mutual and major financial institutions including Teachers Mutual Bank, Community First Credit Union, CommSec and Lloyds TSB. Michael’s experience also includes working abroad as a Product Manager for Lloyds TSB.

Michael leads the day-to-day marketing functions with specific responsibility for brand, marketing strategy and product.