Speakers

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Lord Richard Best

Member of the House of Lords

Lord Richard Best

Lord Best is a past chief executive of the National Housing Federation and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. He was President of the Local Government Association for nine years, Chair of Hanover Housing Association and of The Property Ombudsman for eight years. He is currently Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Housing and Care for Older People, two commissions on affordable housing and of the MHCLG’s Regulation of Property Agents Working Group. Lord Best has successfully piloted five Private Members Bills through the House of Lords, the last being the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Bill 2018.
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Andrew Bulmer

CEO: Institute of Residential Property Management

Andrew Bulmer

A Fellow of the Institute of Residential Property Management and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, Andrew started his residential PRS and leasehold management practice in 1995, selling in 2011. Andrew was UK Residential Director at RICS from 2013-2016, before joining IRPM, the UK’s leading provider of professional qualifications and learning in the leasehold management and Build-to-Rent sectors. Andrew is passionate about raising standards across the residential property management sectors and encouraging property professionals to be a progressive and ethical force for good.
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Gudrun Burnet

Senior Business Partner (Domestic Abuse)

Gudrun Burnet

Gudrun Burnet is the Group Lead on Domestic Abuse at Peabody, one of the largest housing providers in London, and has worked in the field of domestic abuse for 15 years. Guddy co-founded the Domestic Abuse Housing Alliance (DAHA) in 2014 which is a national initiative to improve the whole housing sector response to domestic abuse. Guddy is a representative on the National Violence Against Women’s and Girls stakeholder panel hosted by the Home Office. She has spoken at conferences all over the world on her work including the UK, the USA, Canada, Australia, Czech Republic, Belfast, Brussels and the Hague. She was also shortlisted for Red Magazine's Pioneering Woman of the year Award 2016 and was nominated as one of the Women of Year 2018.
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Bukola Obadun-Craigs

Senior Associate: Brethertons

Bukola Obadun-Craigs

Bukola is a Senior Associate specialising in property management litigation. She has practiced in the field for over 12 years and advises on all aspects of housing law including housing management and leasehold management. Her specialisms include litigation, as well as appearances before the First Tier Tribunal, non-contentious advice on housing policy and regulatory compliance. Bukola is recognised in the Legal 500 2017 in respect of the wide range of areas she practices, under the umbrella of housing management litigation.
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Peter Devere-Catt

Partner: Knight Frank

Peter Devere-Catt

A Chartered Surveyor and Partner at Knight Frank, Peter is also currently the Chair of the IRPM. He has considerable experience of all aspects of property management for major institutional clients, in the last 7 years focused solely on Prime Central London. He joined the board of the IRPM in September 2015 and chaired the web and IT working group for several years before becoming chair at the AGM in September 2018. Peter is passionate about delivering practical health and safety and customer service to residents and is particularly keen to improve standards at this pivotal time in the history of our profession.
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Roger Hardwick

Partner: Brethertons

Roger Hardwick

Roger specialises in residential leasehold property law. His work includes statutory lease extensions, collective enfranchisement and right to manage claims; freehold acquisitions; ground rent portfolio sales and purchases; residential service charge disputes; applications to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) and appeals to the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber), including applications to determine service charge liabilities, applications to appoint a manager and applications to vary leases. Roger was recognised as a ‘Leader in the Field’ by the Chambers & Partners Guide to the UK Legal Profession 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 and has won both the Solicitor of the Year and Regional Professional of the year at the Enfranchisement and Right to Manage awards in 2017 and 2018.
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Nigel Howell

CEO: FirstPort

Nigel Howell

Having joined FirstPort as Group Chief Financial Officer in January 2013, Nigel was appointed Chief Executive in February 2015. He has led a significant performance turnaround at the company with a clear focus on strategy, customer service, staff engagement, and safety - delivering for customers, clients, and investors alike, whilst creating a sense of pride amongst colleagues. Nigel’s career has included working in senior finance, strategy, and business development roles at Morrison plc, Hawker Siddeley, Shell, Cable & Wireless, and Centrica/British Gas, both in the UK and overseas. Nigel is a Trustee on the board of Trust for London, a qualified accountant (FCMA), Chartered Director (CDir), and a Member of the Institute of Residential Property Management (MIRPM).
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Professor Nicholas Hopkins

Law Commission: Commissioner

Professor Nicholas Hopkins

Professor Nick Hopkins is Law Commissioner for England and Wales for Property, Family and Trust Law. He is the lead Commissioner for the Commission’s work on enfranchisement and commonhold. His previous Law Commission projects include Updating the Land Registration Act 2002. Prior to appointment at the Commission he spent over 20 years as an academic, and has published widely in the field of property law. He holds a Chair in Law at Reading University. He is an academic member of the Property Bar Association and Property Litigation Association, and an honorary bencher of Middle Temple.
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Jonathan Gough

Health and Safety Manager: Fexco Property Services

Jonathan Gough

The national Mental Health at Work 2018 Report found that, for 61% of employees with mental health issues, work had been a cause or related factor. Jonathan Gough CIMOSH, an experienced health and safety professional and qualified mental health first aider, will be discussing the importance of ensuring employees’ mental health wellbeing and the programmes he has implemented over his 19-year career. Jonathan is currently Head of Health and Safety for Fexco Property Services, which is investing in a number of initiatives, large and small, to improve the mental health of its employees across the country.
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Jeff Platt - Moderator

Managing Director: Section20 Ltd

Jeff Platt

Jeff Platt - by popular demand we have dragged Jeff Platt back out of semi-retirement to once again act as our host for the day. As former CEO, Jeff requires little introduction. His diplomatic skills are legendary and no doubt he will complement the valued contributions of our speakers with a sprinkling of wit and sarcasm.
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Mark Prisk

Member of Parliament

Mark Prisk

Mark Prisk was first elected as the MP for Hertford and Stortford in 2001 and has been re-elected at every subsequent election. In 2017 he secured over 60% of the vote share. Born in Cornwall and educated at Reading University, Mark is a Chartered Surveyor by profession. He ran his own business for ten years before entering politics. Mark is a former Government Minister, serving as Business & Enterprise minister 2010-2012; then as Housing Minister 2012-13. He was appointed as the Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to the Nordic & Baltic nations in 2014 and to Brazil in 2016.
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Nita Sharma

Executive Coach and thought leader on Inclusive cultures

Nita Sharma

Nita Sharma is an accredited coach and facilitator who has over 25 years’ experience of working with multi-national, complex stakeholders in global organisations. The value proposition Nita brings to organisations is to help create and transform narratives that enables them to be forward-focussing in optimising their vision whether it is to give competitive advantage, or have cultures which are supportive, inclusive and relevant for today’s purposes. Her key areas of expertise includes executive coaching, diversity and inclusion with mindfulness, leadership development, and cross cultural management. Her commercial experiences extends to working with leadership teams in the UK, Continental Europe, USA, the Middle East, APAC and India. Nita is an Advisory Board Member for the British Science Association.
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Katrine Sporle

Property Ombudsman

Katrine Sporle

Katrine Sporle CBE took up her current post as The Property Ombudsman on 1 November 2015. Previously, Katrine was Chief Executive of the Planning Inspectorate for England and Wales (2003 – 2011), which involved being responsible for all aspects of the Government Executive Agency, 1000 members of staff and a £60m budget. Katrine was Executive Director and Chapter Clerk at Salisbury Cathedral (2011 – 2015) where she reviewed the Cathedral Master Plan and led a successful HLF Bid for the re-display of the Magna Carta during the 800th Anniversary celebrations. Prior to that, Katrine was Chief Executive of Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council for eight years. She provided inspirational leadership to develop the potential of the Borough as a whole, gaining a reputation for economic, cultural and social success.
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Lakhbir Hans

(on behalf of Mrs Heather Wheeler MP) Deputy Director Leasehold, Commonhold and Rentcharges Division, MHCLG

Lakhbir Hans

Lakhbir Hans is the Deputy Director for leasehold, commonhold and rentcharges at MHCLG. She is an experienced policy professional, having led a wide range of government policies across Whitehall, including employment law reform, new nuclear build, state aid policy, and support for small businesses. Lakhbir’s experience outside central Government includes heading up the chair and chief executive's office at the Equal Opportunities Commission, and working on Kingfisher PLC’s sustainability programme. At MHCLG, Lakhbir was the Bill Manager for the Housing and Planning Act 2016, and Deputy Director for the Homelessness and Housing Strategy teams.
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Nick Whitten

Director - UK Research: JLL

Nick Whitten

Nick Whitten manages the day to day operations of the London-based JLL Living Research team with covers the residential, student accommodation and senior living sectors in the UK. The team provides UK market briefing papers and thought leadership that supports the wider residential, affordable housing, multifamily, student accommodation and senior living advisory and agency businesses. It engages directly with Government to provide policy advice and with clients to provide transactional support and strategic consultancy advice. Nick’s experience spans advisory for both public and private sector clients on residential development and investment opportunities. He acts as JLL spokesperson for a wide range of housing market-related issues and is regularly cited in national and international media, alongside a wide range of industry speaking engagements.