Danny McCance 14 Jan 2019 01:03pm

Movers and shakers

A round-up of this week's appointments, promotions, board moves and resignations

Office of Tax Simplification

Bill Dodwell has been appointed as the new tax director at the OTS and will replace Paul Morton, effective immediately.

Dodwell joined OTS as a senior policy advisor in July last year after leaving his role as head of tax policy at Big Four firm Deloitte, where he had worked for more than 15 years. In this role, he was responsible for representations to HM Treasury, HMRC, the OECD and EU.

A chartered accountant, Dodwell was the president of the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT) between 2016 and 2017 and chaired the organisation’s technical committee.

He was also editor-in-chief of its Tax Adviser magazine and a member of the GAAR advisory panel.

During his career he represented both CIOT and Deloitte before the Public Accounts Committee, the Treasury Select Committee and the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee.

Akin Gump

Claudius Modesti has been appointed as a partner in the white collar defence and government investigations unit at the US law firm, effective immediately.

Prior to his appointment at Akin Gump, Modesti was enforcer-in-chief of the US watchdog, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB). In his new role he will be advising accounting firms, regulated entities, corporations and individuals caught up in regulatory investigations and enforcement proceedings involving the Securities and Exchange Commission and PCAOB.

Modesti resigned from the PCAOB in May, along with a number of senior executives form the leadership team.

During his time there he led more than 100 investigations into US and foreign-based accountancy firms annually. He spent time working with the SEC, the fraud section of the Department of Justice’s Criminal Division, and as a federal prosecutor with the US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.

National Audit Office

Gareth Davies has been selected by the prime minister and the chair of the Public Accounts Committee Meg Hillier as the preferred candidate for the role of comptroller and auditor general of the NAO.

 If his appointment is officially confirmed by the Queen then Davies will succeed Amyas Morse, who will step down on 31 May after completing his 10-year term.

Davies is currently head of UK public services and a partner at mid-tier accountancy firm Mazars, having joined in 2012. He is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy as well as an honorary treasurer for Save the Children and a trustee of the institute of Development Studies.


Laurie Hannant has been appointed as a new audit partner in the East Midlands team of the UK’s fifth-largest accountancy firm.

Prior to joining BDO Hannant, a fellow chartered certified accountant, spent was a director at Big Four firm EY, having spent 15 years with the firm. Previously she was an audit executive at RSM Tenon, where she spent three years, and prior to that was an audit trainee at Gregory Preistley and Stewart.


Angela Savin has been appointed as partner in the Big Four firm’s disputes and investigations team.

Savin was previously a tax partner at global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright, where she worked for more than eight years, specialising in the resolution of tax disputes. Previously she was a senior associate at Norton Rose, and an associate at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer.

Meanwhile, Kriti Velji and Nick Stevart have been appointed as directors in the transfer pricing team at KPMG.

Prior to her appointment Velji spent 25 years at the Inland Revenue Department in New Zealand, working in transfer pricing and international tax since 2005.

Stevart previously spent 18 years with HMRC, where he led the advanced pricing agreement (APA) programme and a team of delegated competent authorities working on non-financial APAs and mutual agreement procedures. He represented the UK at the OECD/G20 BEPS action 14 discussions and the FTA MAP Forum.


Linda Beal has been appointed as an independent non-executive director of the oil and gas company, effective immediately.

She will chair the Aminex audit and risk committee.

Beal, ACA, spent more than 30 years at Big Four firm PwC, having been partner for 16 of those years. She also spent two years as a partner at Grant Thornton, where she was the leader of the global energy and natural resources group. She is currently non-executive director at Tax Systems, San Leon Energy and Kropz.


Anna Bielby has been appointed as CFO of the broadband internet provider, effective immediately.

Prior to her appointment Bielby – a fellow of ICAEW – was interim CFO at the company, having been in the role since July last year and holding very senior roles in the finance team since joining in 2014. She spent more than 13 years at PwC, where she was a director.


Tim Sykes has been appointed as CEO of the ecommerce solutions provider and will replace Hamp Wall with immediate effect.

Sykes, ACA, was appointed as CFO at Proactis in 2015, having joined the group company in 2006. He will manage the finance function during the interim period while a replacement is found. 

Hastings Group Holdings

John Worth has been appointed as CFO of the insurance group and will replace Richard Hoskins, who has chosen to retire.

Worth, ACA, is currently group CFO of MS Amlin and was previously CFO of the Co-operative Bank and interim group chief financial officer of Hiscox and Aspen Insurance Holdings. He spent more than three years as group financial controller at Barclays, and previously chief auditor of Barclays Capital, and spent four years as CIO of Prudential. Worth worked at both EY and PwC, as a partner and a senior manager in banking and capital markets respectively.


Dame Jayne-Anne Gadhia has been appointed as non-executive director of the transport company, effective from 1 March 2019.

Dame Jayne-Anne has recently been appointed as an external member of the Bank of England’s Financial Policy Committee.

Dame Jayne-Anne became a Dame commander of the Order of the British Empire and was recognised in the recent New Year’s Honours for her work in the financial services industry.

She trained with Ernst & Young (now EY) and joined Virgin Money in 2007 as CEO, leading the bank until October 2018 when it was sold to CYBG plc (formerly the Clydesdale and Yorkshire banking groups) in a £1.7bn deal. She held the government’s review into equality and inclusion in financial services as the Women in Finance champion.