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SRA chair’s term extended as regulator seeks new board members

Rowlands: many challenges ahead

Enid Rowlands has been reappointed as chair of the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s board for one more year as it begins recruiting three new members.

Ms Rowlands, who became the regulator’s first lay chair in 2015 [1], will now continue until December 2018.

Her reappointment was confirmed by an independent panel chaired by Elizabeth Filkin CBE, who oversaw her original appointment as well.

Ms Rowlands’ professional life was in economic development training and skills, ending up as chair of Education and Skills Wales. She was a board member of the General Medical Council for eight years and has been UK chair of Victim Support.

She has held roles with several other public bodies and joined the SRA board in 2013. In the last financial year, she was paid £90,000.

Ordinary board members received £12,500 and those whose terms are coming to an end are former Law Society president Paul Marsh, Professor Shamit Saggar – one-time chairman of the Legal Complaints Service – and Jane Furniss, the senior independent director on the board.

Applications close [2] on 19 September, with a view to the new members being in place in January.

Ms Rowlands said: “We have made good progress as an organisation, but there is still much more to do and many challenges ahead. We will continue to focus on making sure solicitors meet high professional standards, while creating a diverse, open, modern legal market. A market that provides accessible, affordable services and allows solicitors and law firms to thrive.

“A strong board is essential to achieve our objectives. Jane, Shamit and Paul have made an invaluable contribution, and I look forward to recruiting new board members who can match their experience and expertise.”

Also in the world of legal regulation, Rob Powell, the Legal Ombudsman’s (LeO) director of corporate services, has been appointed its new chief executive in succession to Nick Hawkins.

The qualified accountant joined LeO in October last year, moving from Ofwat, where he was the delivery director and director of finance.

LeO is currently recruiting for a new Chief Legal Ombudsman as Kathryn Stone is moving on [3] at the end of the year to become the new Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards.

The successful candidate will be paid £101,200 to £110,000, depending on experience. Applications close [4] on 22 September.