Robert Thomas


Robert joined LawDeb in 2017 as a professional independent trustee and is extensively involved with both Defined Contribution and Defined Benefit schemes. He has a strong corporate background, having been a Tax Director for Xerox and a Corporate Finance Director for Pfizer.

Recently appointed to Legal & General’s DC MasterTrust board and its Governance & Risk Committee, Robert currently leads the sole corporate trustee engagement on a 17,000 member DC scheme, is the chair of trustees of three schemes ranging from £500 million to £3 billion assets and sits on several other boards and committees.

Robert has guided fellow trustees to focus on long-term strategy and strong governance with member considerations at the centre, finding that other matters are more likely to fall into place where there is a strong and considered framework. He has brought trustees, advisers and sponsors together to find solutions to complex and challenging pension situations, using his practical, problem-solving approach and considers clear and simple communications to be a key factor in all the work of trustees.

Robert holds a Ph.D. from the University of Bristol and is a Chartered Accountant. He sits on the Council of the Association of Professional Pensions Trustees and has been heavily involved in the establishment of an accreditation framework that supports professional standards for trustees. He is a member of LawDeb’s Pensions Management Group.

Outside work Robert recently started learning the ancient craft of hedge laying which he has been putting into practice.

What our clients say:

“Our retiring Chair was a tough act to follow but the transition to Robert went very smoothly and he was quickly accepted as Chair by the Trustee board thanks to his patient and inclusive leadership style.

It is clear that Robert is very knowledgeable and experienced, and this has added value from the outset of his appointment. In particular, Robert’s recommendations contributed to the smooth running of our recent pension increase exchange exercise.

Robert has also demonstrated a good understanding of the workings of a multinational company which has helped establish a good working relationship with the Scheme sponsor. Overall I would have no hesitation in recommending Robert.”

Paul Wales, Global Pension Asset Management Director, Japan Tobacco International (Gallaher Pension Schemes)