APPT announces first 14 fully accredited professional trustees

The Association of Professional Pension Trustees (APPT) has announced the full accreditation of its first 14 professional trustees.

A further 40 professional trustees have also gained provisional accreditation status, and will become fully APPT accredited once they are able to complete the accreditation examinations and gain final DBS approval.

Included within the first group was the industry’s first accredited female professional trustee, AAA Trustee corporate trustee and director, Shona Goulds.

Goulds described the accreditation as “an important step forward for professional trustees, now more than ever”, adding that it will allow trustees to deliver the best outcomes for members during the current crisis.

The programme, which was announced in February and opened to applicants in April, is designed to promote the “highest possible standards” across the professional trustee industry.

In order to become accredited, professional trustees must demonstrate competency via exams, as well as demonstrating that they are ‘fit and proper’ via a criminal record and professional references check.

Commenting on the news, APPT chair, Nita Tinn, added: “We are very happy with the response received so far from the professional trustee community and are pleased that many of the applications received are from new members.

“The response indicates that professional trustees do see the benefits in being accredited and we expect to see the numbers of professional trustees gaining official APPT accreditation increase over the coming months.”

The scheme is one of two accreditation programmes available to professional trustees, with the pensions management institute launching a separate programme in February.

The PMI accreditation programme announced its first accredited trustee, Michael Clark, in April, and is currently in the process of rolling out online resources in light of Covid-19, with online multiple-choice exams expected this month (May).

Dalriada Trustees previously warned that the launch of two accreditation programmes could risk confusion and undermine the qualification, though PMI clarified at the time that both programmes were expected to follow the same framework.

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