Executive directors

Our staff are divided into directorates and led by a team of executive directors.

ORR's leadership team of executive directors is responsible for delivering the board's objectives and business plan, in line with our legal duties. They also ensure our people are motivated and equipped to deliver first rate safety and economic regulation, which drives better outcomes for consumers and the public.

Joanna Whittington - Chief executive

Joanna was appointed chief executive on 20 February 2017.

The chief executive is responsible for:

  • the delivery by the Office of the strategy set by the ORR Board;
  • carrying out effectively the duties assigned to ORR under statute;
  • ensuring the Office operates efficiently, with integrity and probity;
  • working closely with the ORR chairman, to engage with external stakeholders at all levels.

Joanna is an executive member of the board.

Dan Brown - Director, strategy and policy

Dan is responsible for working with the Chief Executive and Directors to develop and implement ORR's policy and strategy for regulation of the rail sector.

Russell Grossman - Director, communications

As director of communications, Russell is responsible for ORR’s relations with staff, stakeholders and the media and for explaining the value ORR brings to transport and the economy in the UK. This includes ensuring alignment between ORR’s business strategy and strategic communications, including how communication is used as a tool of effective regulation.

Freya Guinness - Director, corporate operations & organisational development

Freya is the Director of Corporate Operations and Organisational Development. She is responsible providing strategic and operational leadership across all of ORR’s corporate operations to enable the smooth running of the business and to ensure ORR is equipped to offer an efficient, effective and value for money service to its stakeholders.

John Larkinson - Director of railway markets and economics

John is responsible for monitoring Network Rail against the challenges of the next five years set out in ORR’s 2013 periodic review, including financial monitoring, and overseeing the delivery of ORR’s role as the consumer authority for the rail industry.

John is an executive member of the board.

Juliet Lazarus - Director, legal and competition

Juliet leads the team providing legal advice to ORR. The team advises on all aspects of ORR's work and manages the relationship with external lawyers. Juliet also leads the competition team. This team is responsible for discharging the functions ORR exercises concurrently with the Competition and Markets Authority and for ensuring ORR considers how best to promote and protect competition in railway markets for the benefit of passengers and freight customers across our regulatory and competition powers.

Ian Prosser CBE - Director, railway safety

Ian Prosser is the chief inspector of railways and director, railway safety. He is responsible for the work of the Railway Safety Directorate, which strives to ensure duty-holders in the railway industry manage health and safety risks effectively and thus comply with their statutory duties. The Secretary of State appointed him to the Board with effect from 26 September 2008.

Ian is an executive member of the board.

Graham Richards - Director, planning and performance

Graham is the director of railway planning and performance, with responsibility for holding Network Rail to account for its performance and its stewardship of the national railway network infrastructure, with the objective of driving a step change in whole industry performance and efficiency for the benefit of taxpayers, passengers and freight customers who rely on Britain’s railways.

Graham is also responsible for monitoring whether the government's Road Investment Strategy is being delivered in our role as the independent monitor of Highways England and its management of the strategic road network – the motorways and main 'A' roads in England.

Graham is an executive member of the board.

Joanna Whittington to leave ORR

ORR Chief Executive, Joanna Whittington, has announced she is leaving ORR to take up the position of Director General, Energy and Security at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). This is a significant appointment for Joanna, who previously spent many years at Ofgem across regulation in the energy markets before returning to ORR in 2014. The BEIS role is a unique chance for her to renew her involvement in the sector at a time of great change and opportunity. An open recruitment process will be held to find the next permanent Chief Executive and an interim chief executive will be appointed before Joanna's departure on 5 October 2018.