Author and former financial adviser Russell Collins has received a Medal (OAM) of the Order of Australia in the General Division in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours List for service to business, particularly to the financial planning industry.

“I am extremely honoured to have received the Order of Australia Medal,” Mr Colllins said. “Financial advising has been both my life and my passion and it is wonderful to be recognized for work that I love doing and which I believe makes a significant difference to the lives of everyday Australians.”

Mr Collins is the principal of Risk Insurance Communication Skills (RICS) and a former financial adviser who specialised in risk insurance for 40 years. He qualified for the internationally prestigious Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT) in 1972 and is now an MDRT life member and a member of the MDRT Honour Roll. He has spoken at international MDRT meetings five times – an Australian record – and is also a life member of the AFA and the 2003 winner of the AFA’s inaugural Award of Merit.

Last month, Mr Collins launched his book Skills that Succeed to the Australian financial services market. “I wrote the book primarily with the current underinsurance problem in our country in mind. Currently, many new and existing advisers are choosing to bypass the opportunity to rectify this situation, preferring to focus the majority of their attention in the investment area where they can talk about the high cost of living, rather than the high cost of dying!” said Mr Collins. “Secondarily, I would also hope that my experience of over 40 years in the risk insurance area would provide a legacy to the industry that has been so good to me.”

Speaking at his launch, Mr Collins said he hoped the book would also serve as a useful guide for both new entrants and experienced advisers. “I hope the book will be a handbook that sits on advisers’ shelves and helps them find answers when they need them,” he said.

Also speaking at the launch, AFA National President Deborah Kent, said Mr Collins’ book provides the practical information around communication that will help advisers succeed in the changing advice landscape. “Every new adviser should read it and every existing adviser should read it. It provides a legacy of knowledge for the future of the life industry in this country.”

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This article was first published by Adviser Voice on 11 June 2015.

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