Founding Chair of Transparency Task Force’s new Advisory Board appointed

by | Aug 9, 2018

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The former Chair of the Financial Conduct Authority’s Financial Services Consumer Panel, John Howard, is to become the Founding Chair of the Transparency Task Force’s new Advisory Board. 

The Transparency Task Force, or TTF, is the collaborative, campaigning community, dedicated to driving up the levels of transparency in financial services, right around the world.  

It currently has 39 ambassadors and over 300 volunteer members from across the UK and global financial services sector.

John Howard joined the BBC as one of the leading voices on Radio 4. He presented documentaries, phone-ins and discussion programmes, winning several awards. He became best known as the consumer’s champion on the daily magazine programme ‘You and Yours’, which he presented for 14 years.

In 1997 he was invited to join the Mortgage Code Compliance Board as an independent director. He subsequently became a member of the Financial Conduct Authority’s Financial Services Consumer Panel, which he chaired for three years until 2008.

Between 2006 and 2008 he was a member of the Market Participants Group of CESR, the European committee of securities regulators, and he also joined the Treasury’s Retail Financial Services Group. On stepping down from the Consumer Panel, he joined the Board of the Financial Ombudsman Service and also became a Non Executive Director of the energy Regulator, Ofgem.

In 2010 he was appointed as an Independent Commissioner by the Treasury for the Equitable Life Payments Commission. He is currently Vice Chair of the Family Building Society and serves on the With Profits Committee and the Independent Governance Committee of Scottish Widows. He is a Trustee of the Thalidomide Trust and Director of the company he founded, Consumer Insights, which provides advice on principles based regulation and fairness in the financial, energy and water sectors.

Andy Agathangelou, of the Transparency Task Force, said: “The Transparency Task Force has been building momentum as a force for good in the financial services sector for over three years now, helping to ensure that consumers get treated fairly. We are a collaborative community that is being taken seriously by Regulators, Trade Bodies, Professional Associations, Civil Society Groups and all the key actors in this space; and we have grown to the point that an Advisory Board is now needed to formally shape our purpose and strategy moving forward.

“It is important that we assemble a great team and all great teams need a great leader. All those who know John Howard will immediately understand why he is the perfect person to take on such an important role for us.  He has had an authentic, high-profile, pro-consumer world view for decades.  We are honoured that John wants to help lead us forward.”

Howard added: “There can be no doubt that the financial ecosystem is profoundly important to the wellbeing of society, the global economy and political stability; so it has always been obvious to me that consumers must get treated fairly. The Transparency Task Force has got off to a very good start and I am pleased to have the opportunity to help take it to the next level.

“We are going to be busy recruiting members for the Advisory Board and I’m pleased to say there is healthy interest in this development, with many people volunteering to help the Transparency Task Force realise its full potential as a force for good. The idea of a pro-consumer community that works collaboratively to make the financial services sector fairer, more transparent, more trustworthy and thereby more successful resonates with many people in the sector; and so it should. Anybody interested in helping should get in touch.”

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