Kathleen Russ, head of tax at law firm Travers Smith, has been appointed as a non-executive director to the board of the HM Treasury’s Office of Tax Simplification.
Russ has led the tax department at Travers for 15 years and has also been a member of the British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (BVCA) tax committee since 2002. She specializes in private equity transactions and advises both institutional investors and management teams, including growth-focused private equity firm ECI Partners and UK mid-market firm Kester Capital, according to Travers Smith’s website.
Russ is “regularly involved in discussions with HMRC on the BVCA’s behalf,” the HM Treasury said in a statement. In her new role she “will provide further guidance, support and breadth of knowledge to the OTS board.”
The OTS was established six years ago to provide advice to the Chancellor on simplifying the UK tax system and was made an independent office of HM Treasury in July 2015. More recently, the OTS was made a permanent, statutory body in the Finance Bill 2016.
Russ has been appointed to the board alongside Paul Johnson a director at the Institute of Fiscal Studies and John Cullinane a tax policy director at the Chartered Institute of Taxation. All three will join existing board members.
“I am delighted to welcome Paul, John and Kathleen to the OTS board,” OTS chair and former head of the British Bankers’ Association, Angela Knight said in the statement. “Together they will bring valuable skills, expertise and experience which will increase the ability of the OTS to provide excellent advice on how to take forward the strategy and simplify the tax system for business and for individuals.”
To date, the government has implemented almost 200 OTS recommendations to simplify the tax system, according to the statement.