New Wales Audit Office Chair confirmed

Wednesday, September 16, 2020 - 4:49pm

The new Chair of the Wales Audit Office has been confirmed as Lindsay Foyster

The appointment was approved and confirmed by  the Senedd on 16 September, on the recommendation of the Finance Committee.

Her term will begin on 17 October 2020, and she will serve until 15 March 2023.

Lindsay worked previously for 30 years in the mental health third sector in Wales, including more than 19 years experience at board and corporate level as the Director of Mind Cymru. She has also had board experience with a number of other third sector organisations. Her particular areas of interest are good governance, equalities and diversity and community engagement. Lindsay has served as a Non-Executive Member of the Wales Audit Office Board since 2015.

Lindsay Foyster was recommended for the position of Chair by the Finance Committee after a thorough and transparent recruitment process. Information about the process is published in the Committee’s report which is available online.

We congratulate and welcome Lindsay Foyster to her new role of Wales Audit Office Chair. Her contribution as an engaged and productive Non-Executive Member has been invaluable and we are in no doubt that she will carry this enthusiasm and energy forward into her new role.

On behalf of the Committee I’d also like to thank the current Chair Isobel Everett for her leadership and unwavering commitment over two terms in the role, and I extend our gratitude for her diligent service.

Finance Committee Chair, Llyr Gruffydd MS

I’m very proud of becoming the new Wales Audit Office Chair and look forward to getting started. I recognise this is a critical time in light of current events and I’m fully committed to my role in delivering what’s needed for the Welsh public sector.

Incoming Wales Audit Office Chair, Lindsay Foyster

I’d like to thank Isobel Everett for her hard work and dedication during her time with us as we bid her farewell as Chair. Isobel has been a strong, committed and dynamic leader who has provided great support to me personally and direction to the organisation.

I’m looking forward to working closely with Lindsay in achieving our ambitions as an organisation at this hugely challenging time for the public sector.

Auditor General, Adrian Crompton

The Finance Committee has also appointed two new Non-executive Members of the Wales Audit Office – Elinor Gwynn and Ian Rees - and the reappointment of Alison Gerrard to serve a second term in the role.

Notes to editors

The appointment of Non-Executive Members of the Board of Wales Audit Office is delegated to the Senedd Finance Committee in Standing Order 18.10(v). However, the Welsh Parliament is responsible for appointing the Chair from amongst the Non-Executive Members.  In accordance with Standing Order 18.10(iv), the Committee recommends a Non-Executive Member to the Welsh Parliament for appointment as Chair.

See the Finance Committee Report in full here [opens in new window]

Wales Audit Office Chair, Lindsay Foyster (7 October 2020 until 15 March 2023):

Lindsay worked previously for 30 years in the mental health third sector in Wales, with over 19 years experience at board and corporate level as the Director of Mind Cymru. She has also had board experience with a number of other third sector organisations. Her particular areas of interest are good governance, equalities and diversity and community engagement.

She was the corporate Equalities Lead for Mind and throughout her working life Lindsay has championed the voice of people, from across diverse communities, to be heard and taken into account particularly when looking at public service development and improvement.

Away from the work of the Board, Lindsay lives in a small village near Caerphilly with her son and has been a governor for the local rural primary school for over six years. She is also currently building on her training and experience as an executive coach and mentor.

Non-executive members:

  • Elinor Gwynn (1 October 2020 until 30 September 2024.) – Ms Gwynn has a scientific and legal background, together with extensive experience in matters relating to the environment and sustainable development. She has considerable experience working in the third sector and public sector in Wales and has previously held Board level positions for the Heritage Lottery Fund and the National Trust. 
  • Ian Rees (from 17 October 2020 until 16 October 2024) – Dr Rees is a highly experienced leader in Education and Training, with considerable experience of working on a regional and national level across the public sector. He has served as a non-executive Board member for public bodies in Wales since 2006, including the Arts Council for Wales and the Welsh Language Commissioner.
  • Alison Gerrard (from 1 July 2021 until 30 June 2025) – Ms Gerrard is currently serving her first term of office as a Non-Executive Member of the WAO and also chairs its Audit and Risk Assurance Committee. She has 14 years’ experience at Board level, as well as previous experience at Director level, including in public sector corporate governance and financial management.  Ms Gerrard has vast experience working within the NHS in Wales and was an independent member of the WAO Audit and Risk Assurance Committee prior to her appointment to the WAO.