The Bar Standards Board is made up of a combination of lay people and barristers. It has a lay majority and lay Chair.
Baroness Tessa Blackstone
Baroness Blackstone has enjoyed a distinguished career in education, politics and public life having been a lecturer at the London School of Economics, a member of the Central Policy Review Staff at the Cabinet Office, a Professor at the Institute of Education, Deputy Education Officer of the Inner London Education Authority, Master of Birkbeck College, University of London and Vice Chancellor of the University of Greenwich. She was Minister of State for Education and Employment from 1997 until 2001 and Minister for the Arts from 2001 until 2003. She has been the Chair of the General Advisory Council of the BBC, the British Library Board, the Institute for Public Policy Research, the Royal Institute of British Architects Trust and of the Board of Great Ormond Street Hospital. She is currently Chair of the Franco-British Council, the Orbit Group of housing associations and the Trustees of the British Lung Foundation.
Ms Naomi Ellenbogen QC
Naomi was educated at King David High School, Liverpool before reading Jurisprudence at the University of Oxford (New College), graduating in 1991. She was called to the Bar in 1992 and appointed Queen's Counsel in 2010. Between 2011 and 2015, Naomi served as Barrister Vice-Chair of the Professional Conduct Committee of the Bar Standards Board, having been a member of that committee since 2005. She was appointed as a member of the Bar Standards Board in September 2015 and as Vice-Chair of the Board in January 2016. Naomi is a member of Littleton Chambers, specialising in Employment, Commercial and Professional Negligence Law. From 2014 to 2018, Naomi was Joint Head of Chambers. She is an accredited mediator and General Editor of Butterworths Employment Law: Practice, Procedure & Precedents, Fifth Edition. Naomi is a Bencher of Gray's Inn, a Deputy High Court Judge and a Recorder of the Crown Court.
Alison Allden OBE
Alison Allden OBE joined the Bar Standards Board as a Lay Member on 1 January 2017. Alison has a professional background in higher education, IT, culture and archaeology. She retired from the post of Chief Executive at The Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) in 2015. Previous senior posts include Deputy Registrar and Director of IS as a member of Bristol University's senior executive team and Director of IT at Warwick University.
Having retired in 2015, Alison maintains a portfolio of non-executive roles including being on the Boards of two universities, Northumbria and Regent's University London. In addition, Alison is an external member on the Cambridge University Information Services Committee and a Trustee of the Gloucestershire County History Trust. She is currently a Senior Advisor with Wells Advisory UK, a higher education consultancy.
She is a Fellow of the British Computer Society (FBCS), a member of the Institute of Field Archaeologists (MIFA) and a Member of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (MCILIP).
Alison was awarded an OBE for Services to Higher Education in the 2016 New Year Honours.
Lara has a range of regulatory and governance expertise. Her career began as a BBC Television producer and continued as a regulator with Ofcom. As a Visiting Fellow at Oxford University's Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism she contributed influential reports on press and media regulation to the Leveson Inquiry and serves as an Independent Member of the press regulator IPSO. She was a member of the UK Statistics Authority's 2016 Steering Group overseeing its Code Review and the introduction of the Office for Statistics Regulation. Lara has a keen interest in criminal justice and was a board member and vice chair of the London Probation Trust. Until 2017 she was a lay panel member for the Bar Tribunals and Adjudication Service, and has served as a lay magistrate chairing in the adult court. She has chaired regulatory panels for the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy and is a lay examiner for the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.
Steven Haines joined the Bar Standards Board as a Lay Member on 1 January 2017. Steven currently works for BT Group overseeing Strategy and Transformation projects. Prior to this he was Managing Director in the new independent Openreach Executive. Previous roles include Managing Director for BT Group (Mobile) where he is responsible for transformation into a mobile business. His previous posts include: Chief Operating Officer/Managing Director 2006-2014, Director of Strategy and Business 2001-2006, Director of Marketing and Product Development 1997-2001, and General Manager Sales and Services 1990-1997.
He is a seasoned senior executive with more than 16 years of board experience. Steven is an active mentor and coach, a Career Councillor and a passionate member of the Gender Diversity Network.
Zoe McLeod joined the Bar Standards Board as a Lay Member on 1 January 2017. Zoe is an experienced Board and Panel Member with more than 20 years' experience in consumer affairs, communications, policy and regulation.
As an established consumer champion, Zoe currently chairs South East Water's Customer Challenge Group and Cadent gas' Customer Engagement Group. She is an Associate with the think tank and charity, Sustainability First where she leads on innovation and supporting vulnerable consumers. Zoe is also Director of The Consumer Watchdog.
With expertise in energy, water, consumer vulnerability, consumer engagement, data and behavioural change, Zoe has previously held posts at OFGEM, OFWAT, local government, Amnesty International, Citizens Advice and Consumer Focus. This included as a member of Ofwat's Expert Advisory Group, a representative on DECC's Consumer Vulnerability Task Force and the Government's Fuel Poverty Advisory Group.
In addition, Zoe was elected Local Councillor/Assistant Cabinet Member for Children and Youth Services - Richmond upon Thames Council between May 2006 and May 2010. She was Chief of Staff to the then Shadow Minister Susan Kramer MP between 2005 and 2007.
Andrew Mitchell QC
Andrew Mitchell QC was called to the Bar in 1992 and took silk in 2011. He specialises in commercial and civil litigation and arbitration. His practice is predominantly in the fields of banking, financial services, professional negligence, professional and financial regulation, and (re)insurance law, with a significant international element. He is a member of the Commercial Bar Association (COMBAR), and also an accredited Mediator. He is a member of Fountain Court Chambers, and was formerly an experienced member of the Professional Conduct Committee of the Bar Standards Board, on which he sat from 2010.
Ms Elizabeth Prochaska
Elizabeth Prochaska is a barrister with 12 years' experience of public and human rights litigation. Since 2017, she has been the Legal Director at the Equality and Human Rights Commission. This followed ten years as a barrister at Matrix Chambers advising a range of private and government clients on public, equality and human rights law. In 2007, Elizabeth founded a non-governmental organisation called Birthrights, which promotes respect for women's rights in maternity care. Elizabeth has written and contributed to a number of legal textbooks focusing on human rights and equality law
Irena Sabic was called to the Bar in October 2002. She is a member of Garden Court Chambers and an established public law practitioner with a particular expertise in immigration and asylum, community care, housing and planning law. In recent years Irena has focussed on the representation of vulnerable children and adults subject to immigration control. Irena is regularly invited to deliver lectures and seminars to solicitors, public bodies and NGOs. She is a Trustee and Board member of Trauma Treatment International.
Nicola Sawford is a portfolio non-executive.
After qualifying with Price Waterhouse she worked in a number of financial, commercial and analytical roles in various sectors including telecommunications, retail, media and financial services. In 2003 she became chief executive at Serle Court, a leading commercial and chancery barristers' chambers, a position she held for twelve years.
In addition to her BSB role she is the Chair at Chelmer Housing Partnership, trustee of the charity Changing Faces and trustee and treasurer of The Access to Justice Foundation. She is also a member of the Managing Partners Forum Advisory Board, an advisor at Crowd Justice and a champion of the First 100 years women in law project.
Adam Solomon QC
Adam Solomon QC read English Literature at Exeter College, Oxford, graduating in 1992, and read for a Master's degree in Critical Theory at Sussex University, graduating in 1994. He took a law conversion course at City University, which he completed in 1997. Prior to being called to the Bar at Gray's Inn in 1998, Adam worked briefly in the European Commission in Brussels, and even more briefly as a school master at Worksop College. Since 2000, Adam has been a Trustee and Director of Law for All (now in administration), a charity committed to providing access to justice for those who might otherwise be denied it. Prior to 2007, Adam practised at Cloisters, and since then he has been a barrister at Littleton Chambers, specialising in commercial, employment and regulatory law.
Kathryn Stone OBE
Kathryn Stone OBE is Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards a post she has held from January 2018. Before that she held the post of Chief Legal Ombudsman for England and Wales. She has also been a Commissioner with the Independent Police Complaints Commission and at Commission for Victims and Survivors in Northern Ireland.
Kathryn is an advisor to an EU Peace Programme, Independent Adjudicator to the Rail Ombudsman and a school governor.
She is a Chartered Director, a Fellow of the Institute of Directors and a Registered Social Worker. She was made OBE in 2007 and was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws by the University of Derby in 2018.
Dr Leslie Thomas QC
Leslie Thomas QC was appointed Queen's Counsel in 2014. A human rights practitioner, Leslie specialises in claims against the police, public authorities and corporate bodies. He is also a specialist in inquests and public inquiries. He is currently an independent member on the Standards Committee for public life for Lewisham Council. In 2016, Leslie won the Legal Aid Lawyers' (LALY) Award for work on the Hillsborough case and in 2017, he won the UK Legal Diversity Lifetime achievement award
Stephen Thornton CBE
Stephen's executive career was spent in the health sector where he has been chief executive of Cambridge & Huntingdon Health Authority, The NHS Confederation and The Health Foundation. His health sector non-executive roles have included The Healthcare Commission; Monitor (the independent regulator for NHS foundation trusts); the Eastern Academic Health Science Network and The Pathology Partnership.
He also chaired the National Institute for Health Research's Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care for the East of England. He has been a Member of the Board of Overseers for the International Partnership for Innovative Healthcare Development, Duke University, North Carolina, USA; a Member of the Governing Council of the International Hospital Federation; and a Lay Adviser on the UK Board for Healthcare Chaplaincy.
He has also been a Member of the Governing Council of the Open University.
He is presently on the Board of the Nursing & Midwifery Council and is a non-executive director of The Senet Group (promoting responsible gambling).
He is a volunteer generalist adviser at Cambridge and District Citizens' Advice Bureau and is an Elder of Downing Place United Reformed Church, Cambridge.
More about our Board, its meetings and its committees
Discover our Board members' register of interests.
Find out more about our future and past Board meetings.
Learn more about about our Board's committees.