Ofgem has appointed Mary Starks as the new executive director of its consumer and markets directorate.

She will take the reins from Rob Salter-Church, who has held the position on an interim basis since Rachel Fletcher stepped down as the senior partner for consumers and competition to become the chief executive of Ofwat in January.

Starks is currently the director of competition and chief economist at the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

She has more than two decades of experience working for a range of organisations within the regulatory and public policy spheres. Before joining the FCA, she was the senior director at the Office of Fair Trading.

Starks has also worked on energy regulation at the economic consultancy NERA and began her career as an analyst at the Bank of England. She is a trustee of Working Families, a charity created to help parents, carers and employees find a better balance between the responsibilities of home and work.

Salter-Church will continue as interim executive director until Stark takes over in September. He will then move to a permanent role as the director for retail systems transformation.

Ofgem chief executive Dermot Nolan said: “I am pleased to announce Mary’s appointment. She has a wealth of experience in regulation and public policy and an impressive track record of protecting consumers.

“I would also like to thank Rob Salter-Church for his excellent leadership of the consumers and markets directorate in the interim.”

Starks said: “I am excited to be joining Ofgem at a time of significant change in the energy sector and am looking forward to making a positive difference for all energy consumers, from households to heavy industry.”

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