Achmea CEO Emma Thomas

Achmea was established in 1811 by farmers for farmers.  Many of our people still have their origins from the land, including our CEO Emma Thomas. Emma’s passion for farming started on her grandparents’ merino sheep farm in the high country in Central Otago, New Zealand.

During the second World War in 1942, Emma’s grandmother, along with 4,000 other women across New Zealand, was enlisted for “essential work” on the land.

Commonly referred to as “Land Girls”, these women kept the country’s wheels turning while the men went to serve in the war. In Australia, the ‘Australian Women’s Land Army’ was formed and thousands of women moved to rural areas to work on the nation’s farms and contribute to food production in a time of shortage and conflict.

More than seven decades later, their service in the war was officially recognised by the government.

Tomorrow on ANZAC Day, we commemorate the memory of those men and women who sacrificed their lives in service to their country.

Lest we forget.