Director of external-affairs rewarded with promotion

The Federation of Master Builders has named Brian Berry as its chief executive.

The building-industry trade association said Berry, who has served as its director of external affairs since 2007, had already played a key role in raising its profile.

National president Derek Bostock said Berry had “quadrupled” the federation’s media profile and ensured it was listened to seriously within government and the sector.

“The construction industry is facing a very tough time with an estimated 45,000 people expected to leave the industry this year,” he said.

“The FMB is working towards a new business plan to ensure that the range of services that we offer to builders is the very best in the market.

“It’s more important than ever that small building companies have the expertise and single voice that the FMB is able to offer them.

“Brian’s background makes him ideally suited to achieving our aim to transform the FMB into a professional trade association.”

Berry began his career as a teacher, but before joining the federation was head of UK public policy at the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

Berry said he was “personally committed” to the federation’s goal of becoming a professional trade association.

“The FMB’s application to government later this year to become a ‘Competent Person Scheme’ operator will be the first milestone on this journey as will the review of how FMB delivers services to its members,” he said.

Berry’s appointment follows the departure of director general Richard Diment in January.

In November Building reported that Diment had been placed “on leave” for an indeterminate period after a dispute had led to questions being raised about his performance as leader of the trade body.

It is understood that the dispute centred on issues concerning the organisation’s budget and tensions arising between the national office and the FMB’s regionally elected directors.