John Preston, chair of the Sainsbury’s defined benefit pension scheme, has joined the London Pensions Fund Authority (LPFA) as chair. He replaces Sir Merrick Cockell, who stepped down last December after four years in the role and nine years on the LPFA board.

Preston is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and a council member and past president of the Chartered Institute of Taxation.

He spent 23 years as a partner at PwC working on global clients within financial services and other industries.

He held several management positions within PwC’s lines of service including chief operating officer, head of risk and quality, financial services market leader and global head of external relations, regulation and policy.

In addition to his role as chair of the LPFA, he is also chair of the Medical Research Council pension scheme. He will continue at Sainsbury’s DB scheme.

His other roles include treasurer and council member of the University of Bath.

John Preston at LPFA

John Preston at LPFA

The LPFA is a defined benefit local government pension scheme with more than 88,000 members, 142 actively contributing employers and assets of £6bn (€7bn).

Together with Lancashire County Council, the organisation is also a shareholder of the Local Pensions Partnership (LPP), which manages the assets of, and administers, the LPFA scheme.

He said: “We will carry on our working with LPP to ensure that we provide efficient administration services to all clients and the scheme will continue to invest prudently and be recognised for our approach to responsible investment.”

The LPFA is a Tier 1 signatory to the UK’s Stewardship Code, a signatory of Climate Action 100+, a member of the Local Authority Pension Fund Forum (LAPFF) and is a participant in the C40 Cities Divest Invest Forum.