Charity Commission appoints Paula Sussex as its next chief executive

Sussex, a senior vice-president of the consulting and outsourcing firm CGI UK, will take over from Sam Younger at the end of June

Paula Sussex
Paula Sussex

The Charity Commission has appointed Paula Sussex, a qualified barrister and a senior vice-president of the consulting and outsourcing firm CGI UK, as its next chief executive.

Sussex will take up her new position on 30 June and succeeds Sam Younger, who will leave the commission in the summer after four years in the role.

Sussex will be paid an annual salary of £125,000 plus pension contributions. This is at the upper end of the advertised salary range, but is about £5,000 a year less than Younger.

A commission spokeswoman said that Sussex was formally offered the job on 25 February, but the regulator could not make the announcement until now "due to normal processes of appointment and resignation, including employment checks".

As senior vice-president, public sector at CGI, Sussex leads the part of the business that provides various services to public bodies. Two recent CGI contract wins include the supply of IT systems to the 1,800 staff of the Department of Energy and Climate Change, and being named alongside the healthcare technology firm McKesson UK as preferred supplier of managed payroll services to 30,000 staff at arm’s length bodies of the Department of Health.

Sussex joined the outsourcing and IT firm Logica in 2012, with the company merging into CGI the same year.

Before this she spent eight years at the outsourcing company Atos Consulting, working with government clients; before that she had four years with the professional services firm KPMG Consulting, two with the power generating and distribution firm Energy Group and seven working between the UK and Hong Kong for Coopers & Lybrand, which later merged into what is now the accounting firm PwC.

She spent six years as a trustee of the homelessness charity Crisis, a role she held until May 2010, and sat on its finance committee.

The commission spokeswoman declined to give a breakdown of which sectors the more than 60 applicants for the role came from. "We received a large number of applications from across all sectors," she said.

On Sussex’s appointment, William Shawcross, chair of the commission, said: "Paula has an impressive track record of managing change and delivering results in the public sector and this is exactly what the Charity Commission needs right now.

"As well as the leadership skills, financial acumen and understanding of the regulatory environment you would expect from someone with her professional background, she is a great communicator with a real commitment to the vital role of the Charity Commission in maintaining public trust and confidence in charity."

In a statement, Sussex said: "I don’t underestimate the challenge of change, but I know there are significant strengths to build on, including the expertise and commitment of the commission staff, and the widespread support for the role and purpose of the independent charity regulator."

Nick Hurd, the Minister for Civil Society, said Sussex would bring "the right skills and experience to deliver the step-change in performance that William Shawcross and his board have already set in motion". 

The commission spokeswoman said Younger’s leaving date was still to be finalised. The Advertising Standards Authority announced yesterday that Younger had been appointed as one of three new independent members of its council, a part-time role that that he will take up from Friday. The 13-strong council is the jury that decides whether advertisements have breached the advertising codes.

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