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ICAEW members recognised in Queen’s Birthday Honours list

23 October 2020: A former Grant Thornton UK CEO, the first female Deputy Director-General of the BBC and ICAEW’s own public sector director were among a group of chartered accountants recognised in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

Nine ICAEW chartered accountants have been awarded OBEs and MBEs in the Queen’s 2020 Birthday Honours List, including ICAEW’s public sector director Alison Ring who receives an OBE for services to accountancy. 

Ring stepped into her ICAEW role in January this year following an illustrious career at HMRC, where she rose through the ranks to Commissioners’ Advisory Accountant. The announcement came as a big surprise to her. She said: “I am very honoured to be nominated for the award, which represents recognition of all of the fantastic work that the advisory and forensic accountant profession has done and continues to do in HMRC – I will be receiving it on their behalf.”

Anne Bulford OBE, former Deputy Director-General of the BBC, has been awarded a CBE for services to broadcasting and charity. Bulford joined the BBC as Managing Director, finance and operations in June 2013 and was promoted to Deputy Director-General in 2016, the first woman to hold the position. Bulford qualified as a chartered accountant with KPMG and spent 12 years in practice. She was awarded an OBE in 2012 for services to UK broadcasting.

Sacha Pemberthy (better known in the business world as Romanovitch) received an OBE for her services to business during the COVID-19 response. Previously CEO of Grant Thornton UK, Romanovitch has been Chief Executive Officer at financial inclusion organisation Fair4All Finance since September last year. The organisation has been working with other sector leaders to develop recommendations to ease pressures and help people build their financial resilience after COVID-19.

Fair4All Finance’s executive chair Richard Collier-Keywood also received an OBE for services to social enterprise. Barrister and ICAEW fellow Collier-Keywood is also Chair of the board at not-for-profit organisation School for Social Entrepreneurs, which helps 1,000 people a year develop the skills, strengths and networks they need to tackle society’s biggest problems. Collier-Keywood was Global Vice-Chairman of PwC from November 2011 to February 2017 and served as Managing Partner of PwC UK from 2008 to 2011.

Ian Dilks’ services to the NHS have also been recognised with an OBE. Dilks is Chair of NHS Resolution, an arms-length body of the Department of Health and Social Care, which provides expertise to the NHS on resolving concerns and disputes fairly, sharing learning for improvement, and preserving resources for patient care. Dilks had a successful career with PwC, including 27 years as a partner providing a wide range of audit, regulatory and advisory services to some of the firm’s largest clients before retiring in June 2013.

Senior representatives at two universities are also included in this year’s Birthday Honours List and will receive OBEs. Rosemary Drinkwater’s honour is awarded for services to higher education, innovation and enterprise in the West Midlands. Drinkwater has been Group Finance Director at the University of Warwick since 1993. Meanwhile, Neil MacDonald, Pro Chancellor at Sheffield Hallam University, has been recognised for services to education and business. MacDonald is also a former President of Sheffield District Society.

Jeffrey Pinnick has been awarded an OBE for services to Holocaust commemoration and education. Former chairman of Yad Vashem UK, Pinnick served for many years as chairman of the Yom HaShoah Forum, the annual Jewish Remembrance Day for survivors of the Holocaust.

And Philip John Collins is the only chartered accountant in this year’s Birthday Honours List to receive an MBE, in his case for parliamentary and voluntary service. Collins spent 18 years working at the House of Commons, latterly as Director, corporate finance and performance.