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Laing O'Rourke names Sir John Parker as new chairman

Laing O’Rourke has appointed outgoing Anglo American chairman Sir John Parker as its new chairman, Construction News can reveal. 

Sir John will take up the chairman role at Laing O’Rourke “later this year”, after he has stepped down from Anglo American.  

Laing O’Rourke’s current chairman and founder, Ray O’Rourke, spent six years on the board of Anglo American as a non-executive director. He stood down from Anglo American’s board last year. 

Mr O’Rourke said: “I am excited to work closely with Sir John to make Laing O’Rourke the recognised leader for innovation and excellence in the construction industry.”

Speaking about his appointment, Sir John said: “I am honoured to join such a progressive organisation, with compelling future plans.

“A culture of engineering excellence is deeply embedded at Laing O’Rourke. I have a deep respect for the organisation that Ray and Des O’Rourke built from scratch over the past 40 years.”

Sir John’s former roles include chairman of National Grid, senior non-executive director and chair of the Court of the Bank of England, joint chair of Mondi, chair of BVT and P&O, and deputy chairman of DP World.

Ray O’Rourke will continue as chief executive of Laing O’Rourke. Last month he told Construction News he would step aside from the business in three years, with succession planning under way.

The chief executive also announced that the company could go public following his departure, which is not expected before 2020, but only if advanced manufacturing takes off sufficiently in the UK.

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