PN 05/16 Ofwat unveils new Senior Leadership Team


Ofwat has today unveiled three new appointments to its Senior Leadership Team within the executive.

The regulator has appointed Aileen Armstrong, who joins from HM Treasury, to become Senior Director, Finance and Governance; David Black, currently Ofwat’s Director of Economics, takes the new position of Senior Director, Water 2020; and John Russell, who joins from Shell, will become Senior Director, Strategy and Planning. David takes up post immediately and Aileen and John will take up their posts in the summer.

Keith Mason, previously Senior Director, Finance and Networks, has taken a new position of Senior Director, Thames Tideway.

In this role, he will ensure that the innovative arrangements put in place to support the delivery of the Thames Tideway Tunnel will deliver value for customers. He will also lead a new stream of work to translate Ofwat’s experience from the Thames Tideway programme to other projects, working with the National Infrastructure Commission and other regulators.

Announcing the new Senior Leadership Team within the executive, Cathryn Ross, Ofwat Chief Executive, said:

“Ofwat has an ambitious vision for the future. We are working to build trust and confidence in water and to make sure customers’ interests are front and centre in the sector’s thinking. We have set a new strategy to help us achieve our goal, but that is just the start.

“Aileen, David and John have impressive credentials and they will strengthen our executive’s strategic leadership. Crucially, they share our culture and values, and have a clear appetite to drive us forward. I am looking forward to them joining our existing team.

“With these new appointments, we have the leadership team, the budget and the policy proposals in place to drive forward over the coming years.”


Notes to Editor:


Aileen Armstrong has been head of the Competition, Markets and Regulation Team at HM Treasury since 2013, working across government to improve public and private markets through greater competition and effective regulation. She has twenty years’ experience across the public sector – before HM Treasury, she held policy and delivery roles in the Competition Commission and the OFT (now the CMA), Whitehall departments and the European Commission.

David Black joined Ofwat in 2012 and before his appointment as Senior Director, Water 2020, he was Director of Economics. Before that he led the finance and modelling workstreams for the 2014 Price Review. David has also worked in economic consulting, advising on economic regulation and competition in communications and utilities. Prior to consulting, David was an economist at Oftel and the New Zealand Treasury and NZ Commerce Commission.

John Russell is currently working in Shell’s group strategy and business environment teams where he is global manager for Shell’s work on city development in Indonesia, India and the Philippines. He also leads Shell’s international programme of Energy Transition engagements.

Prior to working at Shell, John had a long career in the British Civil Service where he was the Chief Operating Officer for Infrastructure UK in HM Treasury. In this role he developed the UK’s first National Infrastructure Plan. He has also had roles as Deputy Director for Growth and Productivity in the Treasury and Head of household energy efficiency policy in the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change. John also has regulatory experience from his time at Oftel.

Ofwat Senior Leadership Team within the executive:

  • Cathryn Ross – Chief Executive
  • Aileen Armstrong – Senior Director, Finance and Governance
  • David Black – Senior Director, Water 2020
  • Claire Forbes – Senior Director, Corporate Communications
  • Elizabeth Hillman – General Counsel
  • Richard Khaldi – Senior Director, Customers and Casework
  • Keith Mason – Senior Director, Thames Tideway
  • Bev Messinger – Senior Director, Business Improvement
  • John Russell – Senior Director, Strategy and Planning