RICS has appointed Justin Young as its new chief executive officer. Young, who most recently held the role of chief operating officer at Knight Frank, will be tasked with leading the transformation and rebuilding of RICS following several tumultuous years for the institution and two damning independent reviews into its governance.

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Justin Young

He will step into the role on 5 July in place of Richard Collins, who had led the institution as chief executive on an interim basis since October 2021 following the Levitt review.

Young said he was looking forward to making sure RICS was able to bring positive change to the built and natural environment and “continues to drive trust and confidence through regulation”.

“Operational excellence and people focus have been central to the leadership roles I have had throughout my career, as have projects to improve not only the service being delivered to clients, but also the experience for staff working in those organisations.”

He added: “The opportunity to lead an organisation whose work is pivotal to the public interest, to a huge body of professionals, millions of clients and a host of decision-makers globally is truly unique.

“I feel highly energised by this opportunity to drive further strategic, cultural and operational change to RICS, providing the right environment in which members reap the benefits of thought leadership and influence, professional development and unparalleled networks.”

The institution had originally set out post-Bichard review to appoint a director-general to lead RICS, but after six months rebranded the role as a permanent chief executive to bring in a wider talent pool.

RICS said Young would bring a wealth of experience within the real estate and professional services sectors, as well as a strong track record leading and growing teams and a key interest in promoting diversity across the sector.

“This is something RICS will continue to strive to lead on as it cultivates partnerships across the built environment and with its professionals to address the challenges of today in support of the public interest,” the institution said in a statement.

Martin Samworth, chair of the RICS board, said Young’s leadership experience within real estate and his track record made him the “ideal candidate” for the role.

“As an established leader in real estate, he understands our work and the scale of what we deliver in the built and natural environment – but he also has the diversity of skills and leadership experience to continue RICS’ journey as we drive our sustainability and diversity agenda,” he said.

“Justin’s background in transforming teams and organisations is key to driving forward our agenda alongside our members’ and board’s input and expertise. I look forward to working with him to achieve our strategic goals and to drive RICS’ transformation with staff and with members.”

Ann Gray, RICS president, said: “The complexity of the challenges we face have never been greater, but this is matched with a truly unique set of opportunities given the contribution of the profession and its great potential.

“Justin has the passion, commitment, skills and people focus to help us lead, influence, regulate and inspire the next generation of surveyors and built environment professionals and I am looking forward to working with him and his team as we continue to build on the great work of a great profession.”