Until recently he was a board member, chair of the audit and compliance committee, and a member of the risk and the investment committees of Standard Life.
Patrick Haren, who is also appointed to the BoI board, is a former chief executive of the Viridian Group, having joined Northern Ireland Electricity (NIE), in 1992 as chief executive.
He led the privatisation of NIE by IPO in 1993 and grew the business under the new holding company Viridian. He worked with the ESB, including as director, new business investment. He served as a board member of Invest Northern Ireland for several years.
Both Mr Atkinson and Mr Haren will be joining the audit committee and the remuneration committee.