Our Board

The Thames Water Utilities Limited Board is made up of the Interim Executive Chairman, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and ten Non-Executive Directors, six of whom are independent.

Between the Directors, there is a wealth of management and financial experience, together with extensive specialist knowledge of the water industry and other regulated utilities.

Both our Board and Ofwat consider six of the Directors to be Independent Non-Executives, forming the largest single group on the Board.

Ian Marchant

Interim Executive Chairman - Thames Water Utilities Limited

Appointed: December 2017

Appointed as Chairman: January 2018

Relevant skills:

  • Highly experienced Chairman, CEO and Non-Executive Director with a focus on the utilities sector
  • Expertise in governance, finance, regulation, renewable energy and climate change mitigation

Relevant experience:

During his ten years as CEO of SSE plc, as part of a 21-year tenure at the energy company, Ian led transformational change, performance improvements and the development of renewables. He is currently Chair of Nova Innovation Ltd and a Non-Executive Director of Aggreko plc. Through his company Dunelm Energy Limited, Ian advises and invests in start-up businesses.

He is the former Chairman and founder of the Scotland 2020 Climate Group and served as the President of the Energy Institute and Chairman of the renewable energy firm, Infinis. Ian is the founder of Scotland’s ‘Lights up Malawi’ campaign for Climate Justice and was recently appointed Honorary President of the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland.

Our Independent Non-Executive Directors

Alistair Buchanan CBE

Appointed: July 2018

Relevant skills:

  • Highly experienced chartered accountant with significant expertise in the regulation of utilities and public policy
  • Board level experience within the water sector and energy sector Board experience at Electricity North West

Relevant experience:

Alistair has a strong track record in developing regulation and public policy after being CEO of Ofgem for ten years until 2013. He was a Non-Executive Director of Scottish Water and was Chairman of KPMG’s UK Power and Utilities Practice for five years until 2018. Before Ofgem, he spent the majority of his career in financial services with investment banks, where he was the top ranked analyst in his sector. He was awarded a CBE in 2008 for his services to energy policy making.

Nick Land

Deputy Chairman/Senior Independent Non-Executive Director

Appointed: February 2017

Relevant skills:

  • Significant experience on the Boards of leading, global companies
  • A highly experienced Chartered Accountant, with global financial and governance experience spanning more than three decades

Relevant experience:

Nick brings a wealth of multi-sector finance and governance experience following ten years as Chairman of Ernst & Young as part of his 36-year career at one of the world’s largest accounting firms. He was also a member of the Global Executive Board. He is currently a Non-Executive Director of the Financial Reporting Council and Chairs the Private Equity Reporting Group of the British Venture Capital Association. He is also Chairman of the Board of trustees of the Vodafone Group Foundation.

This follows a long history of Non-Executive Director roles at global companies such as Vodafone Group, Alliance Boots GmbH and Royal Dutch Shell.

Catherine Lynn

Appointed: November 2018

Relevant skills:

  • Expertise in strategic business management within a regulated, highly dynamic environment
  • Proven success embedding customer needs at the heart of business decision making in a large scale, complex organisation serving millions of customers

Relevant experience:

Catherine brings a wealth of commercial, operational, strategic and senior management experience having played a leadership role in Europe’s low-cost aviation sector for 20 years, with a focus on delivering outstanding customer service. She is the former Group Commercial Director of easyJet, where she was directly responsible for a number of major initiatives underpinning easyJet’s successful exponential growth.

She was also part of the start-up team for British Airways’ budget carrier Go Fly, as founding Head of Customer Services, and has ten years’ experience as a Non-Executive Director.

Ian Pearson

Appointed: September 2014

Relevant skills:

  • Experienced Company Chairman, Non-Executive Director and adviser, with expertise in strategic orientation and value creation
  • Wealth of experience in the development of public policy relating to climate change and the environment.

Relevant experience:

Ian brings extensive business and public sector insight to the Board. During a distinguished Ministerial career from 2001-2010 he held a number of positions, including Minister for Trade & Foreign Affairs, Minister of State for Climate Change and the Environment, Minister for Science, and Economic Secretary to the Treasury.

He spent five years as the Chairman of AIM listed OVCT2, a company which invested in a variety of renewable energy companies. He is also Chairman of Code Investing Ltd, a Senior Advisor to BAI Communications plc and has previously been a member of the UK Advisory Board of PwC.

Jill Shedden MBE

Appointed: October 2018

Relevant skills:

  • 30 years directing people strategies within a regulated utility
  • Expertise in leading successful transformation programmes and driving the diversity and inclusion agenda

Relevant experience:

Jill is currently Group HR Director of Centrica Plc after holding senior HR positions across the Centrica group. She has championed diversity and inclusion throughout her career, and has focused on building a high performing environment and a great place to work. In her role at Centrica, she has led major culture change, cost reduction and reorganisation programmes, as well as achieving “Best Companies” and “Great Places to Work” awards.

Jill was awarded an MBE for her work with the Women’s Business Council, a group set up to advise ministers how to maximise women’s contribution to the future economic growth of the country.

David Waboso CBE

Appointed: February 2019

Relevant skills:

  • A highly experienced Chartered engineer and project manager, leading major infrastructure projects both in the UK and internationally
  • Expertise in maximising the potential of digital technology and digitised assets to increase capability, connectivity and reliability

Relevant experience:

David brings decades of experience leading capital investment and digital transformation projects. After an early career in highways and water supply, he worked on major infrastructure upgrades including the Docklands Light Railway and Jubilee Line Extension. He has held senior positions at London Underground, as well as being the UK representative for the European Rail Agency and a Non-Executive Director of the Rail Safety and Standards Board.

He was awarded a CBE for services to transport in London and has been the President of the Association of Project Management since 2015. Until March 2019 he was Managing Director, Digital Railway at Network Rail.

Non-Executive Directors

Paul Donovan

Paul brings extensive senior executive experience to the Board, most recently as CEO of Odeon and UCI Cinemas Group and, before that, CEO of Eir, Ireland’s leading telecommunications provider where he led successful transformation programmes. He has held senior roles at well-known customer-focused companies such as Vodafone, where he was a member of the Group’s Executive Committee, as well as at Apple, Cable and Wireless, Coca-Cola, Mars and BT.

Paul is an independent consultant and early stage investor in the media telecommunications and fintech sectors and a non-executive director of Arqiva Group - a leading provider of critical national infrastructure. Paul has a keen interest in promoting social responsibility and is a Trustee of the Oxfordshire Community Foundation as well as a co-founder of Our Common Good UK, a social impact accelerator. He is a Doctor of the University of Bradford.

Michael McNicholas

Appointed: July 2019

Michael is currently Managing Director, Asset Management at OMERS Infrastructure, with a focus on Europe. His asset management experience currently focuses on regulated utilities and includes Scotia Gas Networks, Caruna and Ellevio.

Michael previously held the position of Group CEO of Ervia, with responsibility for Ireland’s National Gas Networks and its national Water Utility. Prior to that he was Group CEO of NTR Plc., an infrastructure investment company with a focus on renewable and sustainable infrastructure. He was also an Executive Director in ESB, Irelands national electricity utility, where he held responsibility for Generation & Wholesale Markets, Customer Supply and latterly as Managing Director of ESB International. Michael is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of Engineers Ireland.

John Morea

Appointed: January 2019

Represents the interests of investors, Infinity and CIC.

Relevant skills:

  • Expertise in driving efficiency and embedding innovation to deliver performance improvements, while maintaining priority focus on safety and customer service
  • Strong track record in driving sustainability including promoting environmental protection and climate change mitigation

Relevant experience:

With a 30 year career in the utility sector, including ten years as the first, and current, CEO of Scotia Gas Networks (SGN), John has successfully led the regulated utility through four price controls and secured its place as the UK energy industry’s leader for customer service. He has led the Company’s digital transformation to drive operational and cost efficiencies.

He has a personal interest in people development, including the diversity and inclusion agenda and promoting STEM subjects to young people. He is a current Director of the Energy Networks Association and past Non-Executive Director of Associated British Ports.

Greg Pestrak

Appointed: November 2017

Represents the interests of investor, Wren House.

Relevant skills:

  • Board level experience advising regulated and non-regulated global companies
  • Expertise in delivering value creation programmes and bringing a constructively challenging perspective to business and operating models

Relevant experience:

Greg brings a strong track record in asset management and over 18 years’ consulting expertise working with investors and corporates to drive performance improvements.

This included time at KPMG where he was the Partner leading on infrastructure. He is currently an Executive Vice President at Wren House Infrastructure, with a focus on Asset Management across the global portfolio.