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GFSC to commence search for new CEO

19 Jul 19

GFSC Chairman, Jonathan Spencer, announced today that the Commission will shortly commence its search for a successor to the current CEO, Samantha Barrass, whose second term as CEO ends in August 2020. She intends to return to the UK to pursue the next stage of her career.

The GFSC Board has appointed a specialist agency to commence the search for Samantha’s successor. The recruitment process will be managed by the Board who will work closely with the Minister of Commerce, Albert Isola. The appointment of the CEO is subject to the approval of the Minister.

Mr Spencer said: 

“The process to find the Commission’s next CEO will be robust and we will cast the widest net to ensure that we appoint a strong, competent leader who will deliver continuous improvement for our firms and consumers both in Gibraltar and abroad. 

“In partnership with the Government of Gibraltar, Samantha has worked tirelessly in the interests of Gibraltar. She successfully developed the first regulatory regime for Distributed Ledger Technology, implemented substantial changes to regulation such as Solvency II, and is delivering the Legislative Reform Programme supported by the recently published Financial Services Act. Importantly, she has secured further confidence that the outcomes of GFSC regulation match those of the UK and other international regulators. Our collaborative approach with the Government has allowed us to deliver these impressive improvements and we will work hard to ensure we continue to deliver for all consumers.

“The Board and I are looking forward to working with Samantha over the next year to complete her programme of work and provide continuity and stability for the jurisdiction for the years to come.”

The Minister of Commerce said:

The bar has been set high for our expectations of the new CEO and I am excited at the prospect of working with the GFSC to find the best candidate. The GFSC has been transformed under Samantha’s stewardship and she has navigated us very well through some very difficult challenges in the ever-changing world of financial services. The Financial Services Act which was passed through Parliament this week, evolved from being a consolidation exercise to a complete transformation of our legislation; this was Samantha’s recommendation shortly after her appointment to which I am delighted to have agreed. It has been a pleasure working with Samantha and her team at the GFSC which has been significantly strengthened and is well placed to face the challenges of the future.”  

Samantha Barrass added:

“It is an enormous privilege to be CEO of the GFSC and to have made Gibraltar my home for the last five years. With the continued support of the Government of Gibraltar, an important focus for me in my final year is to continue to do all I can to secure Gibraltar’s reputation as a well-regulated international financial services centre, against the challenging backdrop of Brexit, the need to improve regulatory outcomes, and the continuous development of international standards. I would like to thank the Government, and in particular Minister Isola, for providing the Commission with not just the resources, but the support and leadership to develop a modern regulatory regime.

“When the time comes, I will be very sad to leave and I will particularly miss the dedicated and talented staff at the GFSC.” 

 Notes to Editors

1. Samantha Barrass joined the GFSC in February 2014. Her second term ends in August 2020.

2. Jonathan Spencer was appointed to the GFSC board in October 2011 and has served as Chairmain since February 2016. His term ends in October 2020. 

3. The current Commissioners are: 

    a. Chairman - Jonathan Spencer

    b. Adrian Coles

    c. Paul Sharma

    d. Peter Isola

    e. Kerry Blight

    f.  Emilio Gomez

    g. Samantha Barrass

4. The GFSC is a regulator of the Gibraltar financial services market, regulating providers of financial services conducted in both Gibraltar and other jurisdictions. The GFSC's vision is to be a high performing, agile, and innovative regulator. 

5. The GFSC's regulatory objectives are the promotion of market confidence; the reduction of systemic risk; the promotion of public awareness; the protection of the good reputation of Gibraltar; the protection of consumers and the reduction of financial crime. 


Press Release contact details

Contact Name

Richard Newman

Contact E-mail 


Gibraltar Financial Services Commission
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Europort Avenue


+350 200 40283 / +44 7808815484


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