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DG&S replacement imminent

THE MUCH delayed appointment of a new ICE Director General and Secretary to replace soon to retire Roger Dobson is expected by the end of next week. Though no specific date has been fixed, Dobson has said a number of 'excellent' new candidates - thought to be four - are in final selection, with an announcement due 'shortly'.

But ICE Council has first to approve the Appointment Panel's recommendation for the £100,000 a year post - the stumbling block during the previous selection process. ICE's second attempt to appoint a new DG&S failed in April when a candidate recommended by the Appointment Panel was not ratified by the Executive Board and never taken to Council (NCE 21 May).

Dobson is confident that having ditched previous head-hunting firm PA Consulting in favour of GKRS, a similar hold-up will not occur.

He said: 'The opportunities this job presents are not widely recognised. The last firm of recruitment consultants did not make people aware of the attractiveness of this position and I suspect that a lot of able potential candidates were put off.'

But he admitted the job was hard to sell. 'I was not attracted to the job myself until it was explained to me what a tremendous contribution the DG&S could make to the future of the profession,' he said.

The position, he added, was 'demanding on your time' with the challenge of keeping 'so many balls in the air at once', but he described his eight years in the job as 'enormously enjoyable'.

Dobson has committed himself to stay on for as long as the ICE needs him to ensure a proper handover - having delayed his retirement plans indefinitely.

His final challenge will be to ensure the appointment process remains within budget - thought to be around £40,000. 'A lot of hard work needs to be done to accommodate the changes that have taken place but I'm going to achieve it,' he said.

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