Compiled by the Accountancy Age editorial team, the Financial Power List 2019 ranks the 50 individuals who we believe will make the biggest difference in the accountancy industry over the next 12 months. Individuals considered for the list span government, practice and business. Their status or role does not guarantee their position in this ranking, but rather we have chosen individuals who we think will have an impact in one way or another based on what changes they are predicted to spearhead, whether that be in government policy, tax changes, regulation, firm growth, or industry diversity.
Make sure you check back to view the full rankings, which will be released on 15 February, with five individuals announced every day between now and then.
Here, we reveal the individuals who have made positions 35-31 on this year’s list.
Helen Brand bas been the CEO of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) since 2008, having built her career steadily within the professional bodies. Brand has a wealth of knowledge surrounding the 100 markets ACCA operates in. Furthermore, Brand works closely with the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) in an advisory capacity and is a founding member of the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC).
Being one of the few women who is a leader of a global professional body, she has proven to be an inspiration, solidifying her place in the Financial Power List with her further influence in the movement against gender inequality; Brand is an honorary advisory board member of the Women’s Executive Network (WXN).
In 2014, Mark Farrar joined the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) as the CEO. From the Royal Navy to chartered accountancy, Farrar has a wide range of experience throughout industries, not just the financial sector.
In terms of diversity, Farrar has also been very active in this area; Farrar has previously been a board member for Women into Science & Engineering (WISE). With previous experience as chairman of the government’s Skills Funding Agency, Farrar has certainly warranted his place in our Financial Power List.
Phil Verity has been UK senior partner at Mazars since 2012; he was re-elected for another four-year term in 2017. His specific responsibilities have included overseeing the entrepreneurial business services sector.
Verity also has responsibilities of an international standing. For example, he oversees key regions and business segments. Although his role involves having an international focus, Verity has often showcased his commitment to developing home-grown talent for senior leadership positions.
As the former boss of Virgin Money, Gadhia is one of the most well-known woman in finance, and can now add Dame to her title. Not one to rest on her laurels, Gadhia has been reportedly seeking finance for a start-up which would tap into consumer data to help reduce household bills.
At a time when data is billed as the new oil, this move will be eagerly watched by many in the finance world. Gadhia is a champion of women in finance, and her government-backed review of women in financial services led to HM Treasury establishing the Women in Finance Charter in March 2016. She originally trained in accountancy with Ernst & Young after which she worked at Norwich Union from 1987. From 2001-06 she worked for Fred Goodwin at the Royal Bank of Scotland. She became CEO of Virgin Money in 2007 until its sale in 2018.
In the year that Making Tax Digital becomes a reality – starting with VAT – Palmer is in prime position to shape the industry’s response to it. As an advisor to Quickbooks and tax policy expert at AAT, he is a vocal enthusiast about the opportunities MTD can bring for accountants and a leading authority on the subject.