NEW YORK, Jan. 12, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company today named two new members to the executive management team – Nick Lane as head of the Retirement Savings division and Rino Piazzolla as head of Human Resources. Both will become senior executive vice presidents, subject to board approval, and will report to Mark Pearson, recently named to become chairman and chief executive officer of AXA Equitable effective February 11. "With these new appointments, our top management is set and we can turn all of our attention to aggressively executing our 2011 strategy," said Pearson, 52, who is transitioning from his role as CEO of AXA Japan. "That strategy includes broadening and deepening our focus on the retirement savings business, including the individual annuity business, where we have an enviable record of innovation. At the same time, we are also bringing a renewed strategic focus on our life insurance business, which we expect to be a significant contributor to our growth targets in 2011 and beyond." Lane's appointment marks his return to AXA Equitable from the parent company in Paris, where he has served as head of AXA Group Strategy since 2008. Prior to his stint in Paris, he was a director of AXA Advisors, LLC and vice chairman of AXA Network, LLC, AXA Equitable's retail broker dealer and insurance general agency, respectively. In AXA's asset management business, Lane, 37, has played a key role as a member of the boards that oversee AllianceBernstein, AXA Investment Managers and AXA Private Equity. Previously, Lane was a leader in the sales and marketing practice of the strategic consulting firm McKinsey & Co. He holds a B.A. from Princeton University and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and served as a captain in the U.S. Marine Corps. Lane succeeds retiring senior executive vice president James Shepherdson, 58, who will become chairman emeritus of AXA Distributors, LLC, AXA Equitable's wholesale broker dealer, and serve as an advisor to Pearson. Shepherdson is also expected to join the board of AXA Equitable later this year as a non-executive director. Andrew McMahon, 43, AXA Equitable's president and the head of its Financial Protection & Wealth Management division, will also join the AXA Equitable board. Piazzolla, 57, most recently was the head of Human Resources in Italy for UniCredit. Before joining UniCredit in 2005, he held various human resources management positions in the U.S. and abroad at General Electric Co., PepsiCo and S.C. Johnson Wax. He succeeds Jennifer Blevins, 53, who has decided to retire after nine years as the company's Chief Human Resources Officer, during which she played a significant role in the development and launch of a number of global HR initiatives. Lane is expected to join AXA Equitable in February, and Piazzolla is expected to join soon thereafter once he has secured the necessary authorizations. As a result of these changes, the AXA Equitable Executive Committee will consist of Pearson, McMahon, Lane and Piazzolla, along with senior executive vice presidents Richard Dziadzio, 47, chief financial officer, and Richard Silver, 55, chief administrative officer and chief legal officer. About AXA Equitable In business since 1859, AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company (NY, NY) is a leading financial protection company and one of the nation's premier providers of life insurance and annuity products, as well as investment products and services through its affiliates, including, AXA Advisors, LLC. The company's products and services are distributed to individuals and business owners through its retail distribution channel, AXA Advisors and to the financial services market through its wholesale distribution channel, AXA Distributors, LLC.