'Leader and innovator': Former government actuary Martin Clarke dies

Clarke, who was government actuary for nine years, passed away after a period in hospital
Martin Clarke. Photo: Government Actuary's Department

By Tevye Markson

19 Jun 2024

Former government actuary Martin Clarke has died after a period in hospital.

Clarke, who served as government actuary for nine years from 2014 until his retirement last year, passed away on 5 June and is succeeded by his wife Julia, his three children and three. The funeral will be held in Lincolnshire.

A Government Actuary's Department press release described Clarke as "a lifelong advocate of the importance of the work of actuaries, believing their skills and work can help people and governments make better decisions".

It added: "Martin will be sadly missed by his friends, former colleagues and contemporaries. He made a huge contribution to the industry and in his nine years as government actuary.”

Fiona Dunsire, who became government actuary following Clarke’s retirement in 2023, said: “It was a great shock to us here in GAD to hear the sad news of Martin’s death and his loss will be felt by everyone who knew him in the profession.

"Martin was a leader and innovator here and we see his legacy every day in our work with clients."

Clarke started his career in public service in 2006 at the Pension Protection Fund, following an actuarial and general management career within the retail financial services industry.

After becoming government actuary in 2014, he “steered GAD through a period of modernisation, growth and diversification and the challenges of the pandemic”, the press release said. “He left the department in a strong position, delivering more work, across more areas and public sector clients than ever before,” it added.

In an interview with CSW last year, Clarke said leading the department through Covid had been both his proudest moment as government actuary and the most challenging. 

Clarke was recognised for his contributions to public service in the King’s Birthday Honours in 2023, receiving a Companion of the Order of the Bath.

He told CSW receiving the honour was “an absolute thrill” that set “a perfect seal on a job that has proved to be the most fulfilling experience of my career”.

Martin Clarke supported the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries Foundation. A fundraising appeal has been set up by his family for donations to The IFoA Foundation in his memory.

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