Known for his unwavering commitment and support of financial advisers, respected business development veteran Ron Grima passed away on July 2 after a short battle with motor neurone disease.
Most recently a business development manager on Australian Unity's life and super team in Queensland, Grima dedicated more than more 30 years to the financial services industry.
"Ron joined our team in 2015 and was a wonderful colleague to many, a person you wanted to spend time with," Australian Unity, executive general manager, life and super Adnan Glinac said.
"Universally Ron has been described by those that worked with him as a true gentleman that led by example."
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Grima started out as a financial adviser before moving into business development at Royal & Sun Alliance Australia in 1993, recruiting and training financial advisers. He then spent two and a half years in a similar role for Lend Lease Financial Planning as state development manager.
Later, he held senior roles with Perpetual, Invesco, AXA and Equity Trustees.
A sports fan to the end, Grima was a loyal supporter of the Parramatta Eels, Collingwood Magpies and LA Lakers.
He was also a regular fixture on the horse racing scene, honoured by Racing Queensland earlier this year with the running of the Ron Grima Is A Legend Maiden Handicap 1200m race in Toowoomba.
In 2013 he was recognised by his peers as one of the most influential people in Australian financial advice, featuring in Financial Standard's FS Power50.
In a LinkedIn post, The Social Adviser founder Baz Gardner wrote: "Ron Grima, you were my first BDM and the first person to take a serious interest in growing my professional career. Since 1996 you have always been there giving support and input."
"You had such a big impact on my life and feature at some of the most pivotal moments. A friend I could always call on, who would both listen with empathy and offer encouraging support."
Penning an article in December 2018, Grima criticised the Royal Commission for placing too much focus on misconduct in the industry and failing to recognise the real value of advice.
Linking the argument to his own diagnosis in August 2018, Grima encouraged all advisers to ensure they are adequately addressing their clients' insurance needs.
MND Research Institute of Australia is Australia's most comprehensive motor neurone disease research program, aimed at finding an effective treatment for the incurable disease.
You can make a donation to END MND via the MND Australia website.