French's appointment was accompanied by the confirmation of Michelle McDowell, head of BDP’s civil and structural engineering, as ACE vice chairman. She will hold the role for one year before succeeding French as chairman in 2010.
French said that he was particularly looking forward to ACE’s hosting, in London in September 2009, of the annual conference of the International Federation of Consulting Engineers (FIDIC), which is set to be the largest international gathering of engineers in 2009.
"FIDIC 2009 in London will provide the best possible international showcase for British consultancy and engineering and we need to grasp it with both hands,” he said.
ACE chief executive Nelson Ogunshakin congratulated French on his appointment, adding: "Scott Wilson has been a strong supporter of ACE for many years and I'm particularly pleased to be working with Geoff as chairman over the next 12 months."