Cambridge Building Society chief executive Stephen Mitcham has been elected as the chair of the Building Societies Association.
Mitcham, who has held the post of deputy chair since May 2017 takes over from Jonathan Westhoff, chief executive of the West Brom.
At the same time Mike Regnier, chief executive of Yorkshire Building Society, has been elected as BSA deputy chair.
Mitcham said: “I am taking over as BSA chair with a strong belief in the critical part that building societies play in today’s financial services market. Being customer-owned we can operate differently, able to take a longer term view.
“The visible effect is to add to consumer choice, allowing us to serve not only the mainstream but those customers with more complex needs who are underserved by the rest of the market.
“My 12-month tenure will see the UK leave the European Union and enter into whatever transition arrangements are eventually agreed.
“As UK-domestic players, building societies are well placed to operate through the inevitable changes that will come, but the sluggish UK economy is of concern. Our focus is to do everything possible to promote the interests of our 23 million members, savers and borrowers alike.”