Karen Wint

Non-Executive Director, Chair

Karen is our new Chair, taking over the role from Stuart Purdy. She has previously chaired the Risk Committee and been a Member of the Audit and Compliance Committee. Her career spanning 30 years in the building society sector drives her passion for the mutual model. As Chair, Karen will also be a Member of the People and Culture Committee.

Janet Bedford


Janet, as CEO, has responsibility for developing and proposing the Society’s strategy. She has overall responsibility for all aspects of the Society’s performance, including financial, regulatory, risk and people management. A Chartered Accountant, she has been with the Society for several years, having joined as Finance Director in 2014, during which time she has been instrumental in building the Society’s level of profitability, capital and liquidity. She has extensive senior leadership experience within the financial services sector, having operated as Deputy CEO at the Society as well as previously holding senior finance roles for the global payment provider, RBS Worldpay.

Mark Marsden

Risk Director

Joined the Board in November 2014. Experienced risk and compliance professional with 18 years retail lending and deposit taking experience. Mark is responsible for defining and overseeing implementation of the Society’s credit and operational risk management arrangements (including as Money Laundering Reporting Officer and Data Protection Officer), and providing regular risk reports to the Board. Mark has also taken on responsibility for managing the financial risks associated with climate change.

Chris White

Chief Financial Officer

Christopher joined the Society as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) in 2022. Christopher brings with him a wealth of financial services and building society sector experience, having spent over 10 years within the Building Society sector after qualifying as a Chartered accountant with PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC). In addition to overseeing the Finance Department, Christopher has responsibility for Human Resources, IT and the Society’s change program. Christopher has a proven track record in delivering growth through the delivery of a proactive financial strategy and is passionate about mutuality and offering great mortgage and savings products to new and existing members through the Building Society model.

Oliver Laird

Non-Executive Director

Joined in February 2022. Chair of our Audit & Compliance Committee. Oliver is an experienced chief financial officer with significant public and private sector experience, including retail financial services. He has previously held senior roles at Lloyds Banking Group, Co-Operative Financial Services and was Finance Director at First Direct Bank.

Bob Andrews

Non-Executive Director

Joined the Board in October 2022. He is our People & Culture Chair, Whistleblowing Champion and a Member of the Risk Committee. Skipton-based Bob’s strengths lie in strategy and growth, governance, effecting culture change and brand development. After 35 years in mortgage lending, operations and insurance sectors, he remains as CEO of fellow mutual Benenden Healthcare and NED of the Association of Financial Mutuals. Expert in working with business leaders to define their vision, value proposition and strategy while instilling operational excellence.

Mark Robinson

Non-Executive Director

Joined the Board in October 2022. Chair of the Risk Committee and a Member of the Audit Committee. As the retiring CEO of Market Harborough Building Society, Mark has highly relevant expertise in niche lending, distribution, IT infrastructure and culture development. Originally hailing from North Lincolnshire, Mark has extensive experience of leadership at board level, predominantly in the mutual sector, and possesses a strong understanding of risk, compliance and regulatory relationship management.

Barry Meeks

Non-Executive Director

Joined the Board in October 2022. As Senior Independent Director, he deputises for the Chair in her absence. Barry, from North Yorkshire, is a highly experienced financial services NED, senior independent director and committee chair, with specific expertise in mortgages and banking. He has more than 20 years’ experience in the building society sector and has held numerous CEO positions. Barry is currently an Independent Non-Executive Director (INED) and Risk Co Chair for a recently licenced new challenger bank, as well as Chair of Risk for a financial services and technology business. He is experienced in regulatory interaction and risk/governance being a Chartered Director and a Fellow of The Institute of Directors.

Stephen Smith

Non-Executive Director

Joined the Board in October 2022. Member of Risk Committee and People & Culture Committee. With 40 years’ experience in the financial services sector in executive and non-executive roles, Yorkshire-born Stephen spent 25 years working for Legal & General, including heading up its mortgage and housing-related retail businesses. He has practical experience of mortgage market distribution, driving growth strategies, and an understanding of targeted customer marketing.

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