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new independent assessor appointed

24 May 2010

The board of the Financial Ombudsman Service today announced that it has appointed Linda Costelloe Baker OBE as the new independent assessor.

The role of the independent assessor is to carry out a final review of the level of service provided by the Financial Ombudsman Service, in cases where a user of our service has already referred a complaint to our service-review team for investigation but remains dissatisfied.

Linda Costelloe Baker's appointment follows the announcement in February 2010 that Michael Barnes CBE would be retiring as the independent assessor at the end of May 2010 after eight years in the post. Michael Barnes recently published his final annual report, summarising his work and recommendations for the year 2009/2010.

Linda Costelloe Baker was the Scottish Legal Services Ombudsman for six years and the Independent Monitor for Entry Clearance for three years, following ten years as a management consultant specialising in service quality, complaints handling and organisational design and development. She also chaired a ministerial working group and sat on the Standards Commission for Scotland, the Immigration Services Commissioner's Advisory Panel, the Criminal Injuries Compensation Appeals Panel and the Parole Board for Scotland. She has an MBA from Manchester Business School.

Linda Costelloe Baker will take up the role of independent assessor from June 2010. She was recruited following an advertisement in the national press and a selection process that involved non-executive board directors of the Financial Ombudsman Service and an independent public-interest observer.

media enquiries

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image: Linda Costelloe Baker OBE

photo: Linda Costelloe Baker OBE

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