Financial Conduct Authority
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FCA further bolsters its leadership team as it expands its headcount

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has appointed six directors as it expands its headcount to meet a growing remit and to achieve its ambitious strategy, which launched in April. The appointments announced today, which fill a mix of new and existing roles, draw on the FCA’s internal talent and external expertise. They add to the almost 500 new colleagues the FCA will have successfully recruited between January and the end of July this year.

Roma Pearson has been appointed as the FCA’s Director of Consumer Finance, responsible for the supervision and policy development in the consumer lending and mortgages sectors. Roma has been at the FCA and its predecessors since 1996, most recently as a Head of Department in the Risk and Compliance Oversight division. Roma will take up her new position in July.

Camille Blackburn will join the FCA in October to the newly created role of Director of Wholesale Buy-Side. In her new role, Camille will be responsible for policy development and the effective supervision across asset management, alternative investments, custody banks and investment research. Camille will join the FCA from Legal & General Investment Management, where she is currently Global Chief Compliance Officer.

Matthew Long has been appointed as Director of Payments and Digital Assets, a new role overseeing the e-money, payment and crypto-asset markets and leading related policy development. Matthew is currently a Director within the National Economic Crime Command within the National Crime Agency, which has a strategic leadership role for economic crime and illicit finance. He also led the UK Financial Intelligence Unit. He will join the FCA in October.

Anthony Monaghan has been promoted within the FCA to Director of Retail and Regulatory Investigations, which he has been covering on an interim basis since April 2021. Anthony will be responsible for the FCA’s regulatory investigations in sectors including banking, insurance, financial advice and personal pensions. Anthony has been at the FCA since 2010, most recently as Head of Retail & Regulatory Investigations within the regulator’s Enforcement and Market Oversight Division.

Karen Baxter will join the FCA’s enforcement team as Director of Strategy, Policy, International and Intelligence. In her role, Karen will lead the specialised functions that support the breadth of the FCA’s enforcement and market oversight activities, helping ensure it has the tools it needs to do its work effectively. Karen will join the FCA in September. Karen had a 30-year policing career, holding senior roles including as Commander and National Coordinator for Economic Crime at the City of London Police. Karen is an Ofcom board member for Northern Ireland, having been appointed by the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport in March 2022.

Simon Walls, who was appointed interim director in May, will continue in the role of Director of Wholesale, Sell-Side on a permanent basis, with a focus on the Wholesale Sell-Side.

Nikhil Rathi, Chief Executive of the Financial Conduct Authority, said:

'As our remit grows and to deliver on our ambitious strategy, we’re continuing to develop and bring in the skills and talent we need. My Executive Committee colleagues and I are delighted to announce the latest additions to our leadership team, who will each bring deep expertise and broad experience to the FCA.'

Biographies of the new appointees

Roma Pearson

Roma has over 25 years in financial services including eight years in senior leadership positions. She's been at the forefront of regulatory change for the benefit of consumers particularly across consumer lending and general insurance markets. Roma joined the FCA's predecessor as an Investment Firms Supervisor. She has held various management and leadership positions including the Head of Mortgages & Consumer Lending, Head of Wholesale Authorisations and most recently as the Head of Risk Advisory.

Camille Blackburn

Camille brings regulatory experience from private and public sectors. She joins us from Legal & General Investment Management where she was Chief Compliance Officer and was responsible for the company’s global compliance framework and team. Before that she was Chief Compliance Officer at Aviva Investors and was Chair of the Investment Association's Brexit Committee. She has held international chief compliance officer roles in investment banking and money services businesses.

Camille has held senior policy roles at the Central Bank of Ireland and for the Australian Government. She was a Principal Advisor to the Australian Treasury on the 2014 Australian Financial System Inquiry and the 2016 Capability Review of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. During the financial crisis she was the Head of Investment Banking at the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.

Matthew Long

Matthew’s current role is as the Director of the National Economic Crime Command within the National Crime Agency (NCA). His responsibilities include leading the multi-agency National Economic Crime Centre which has a strategic system leadership role for economic crime and illicit finance. He also led the UK Financial Intelligence Unit (UKFIU) which has national responsibility for receiving, analysing and disseminating financial intelligence submitted through the Suspicious Activity Reports Regime. Operationally he is a multi-agency Gold Commander and an accredited Strategic Investigation Advisor with the College of Policing. Matthew is passionate about mentoring and is a NSC Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic Mentor, and has been part of the team setting up a new mentoring scheme in the NCA.

His previous role was leading the response to Organised Immigration Crime, Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking, Drugs, Firearms and Borders.

His career began as a detective in Kent Police where he qualified as Senior Investigating Officer (SIO) having led over 400 investigations, including a number of high profile child abuse operations. He received national and international awards for his investigations and innovation.

Matthew holds a PhD in Risk Management and has been part of a team creating worldwide child abuse risk assessments. In his academic life he is currently working on applying child abuse risk models to terrorism.

Anthony Monaghan

Anthony joined the FCA after several years as a financial services litigator at Herbert Smith LLP (now Herbert Smith Freehills).  Prior to that, Anthony spent five years at the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR), an organisation that specialises in resolving commercial disputes through alternative dispute resolution, and particularly mediation.  He is an Accredited Commercial Mediator and also spent 10 years as a visiting lecturer for the International Commercial Mediation LLM programme at the University of Westminster.  During this time he was joint editor of a book on this subject, Butterworths Mediators on Mediation (2005).

Karen Baxter

Karen retired from policing in 2020, after a 30-year career that spanned service with the Royal Ulster Constabulary, Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI), and the City of London Police. She has a diverse and unique operational portfolio, having led complex investigations into sexual and violent crime, homicide, and organised crime. At a Strategic level, Karen led the PSNI’s Counter Terrorism Unit, securing prosecutions against some of the most violent terrorist groups in the United Kingdom. Her efforts, whilst working with key stakeholders in this arena, saw significant reductions in terrorist related organised crime and paramilitary attacks.

In 2018, she was appointed as Commander and National Coordinator for Economic Crime for UK Policing. Karen’s responsibilities included complex fraud, money laundering, overseas anti-corruption, and intellectual property crime investigations. Karen was also Deputy to the National Police Cyber lead for policing across UK. At a strategic level, she delivered a National Policing Strategy for fraud which was implemented across UK Policing with the support of Police and Crime Commissioners to develop a more consistent approach to economic crime.

In 2020, Karen joined UK Finance as the Managing Director for Intelligence Strategy to review the current use of intelligence and information within the financial industry.

Karen is an Ofcom board member for Northern Ireland, having been appointed by the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport in March 2022.

Simon Walls

Simon’s most recent role has been as Head of Wholesale Markets Supervision, which he has led since 2016. Simon has helped the FCA navigate the challenges of EU withdrawal, LIBOR, the implementation of MiFID II and the recent pandemic and Russian invasion of Ukraine. Before that Simon held a variety of wholesale roles at the FCA’s predecessor, including supervising large asset managers, custody banks and alternative investment firms back to the financial crisis. Simon started his career at the Bank of England and joined the FSA in 2006.

Simon has been interim Director Wholesale, Sell-Side covering asset management and wholesale markets since May.

Notes to editors

  1. The FCA published its business plan and new strategy in April 2022. As the FCA’s remit is broad and growing, the three-year strategy prioritises resources to prevent serious harm, set higher standards and promote competition. The regulator will also, for the first time, hold itself accountable against published outcomes and performance metrics.
  2. The FCA has made a number of recent senior appointments in support of its new strategy.
  3. In addition to building its headcount to achieve its strategy, the FCA is expanding its national footprint, with plans to double its headcount in Scotland and open an office this year in Leeds.
  4. Find out more information about the FCA.
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