Our Executive Team

Our Executive Team bring a wealth of experience and specialist knowledge to their roles. Together, they share leadership of the day-to-day management of Succession, as well as the delivery of our long-term vision and commitment to an exceptional client experience.


James Stevenson

James became CEO of Succession in January 2018 and is responsible for the strategy, leadership, and continued growth of the business. Having joined Succession in April 2015 as Group Operations Director bringing a wealth of experience gained from over 25 years working within the financial services sector for several companies including AXA, Logica, Aon, and Accenture.

James’ vision for Succession is to be the Trusted Advisor of Choice by building meaningful relationships with our clients through understanding them, their goals, and their aspirations. He is passionate about putting people at the heart of everything we do by ensuring every individual at Succession lives by our purpose, values and behaviours and take pride in the company we work for.


Peter Coleman

Peter is a Chartered Accountant and has been a director of financial advice businesses for 20-years. During this time he has looked after most functional areas including Finance, Operations, Financial Planning and Strategy.

In the past, he has led the re-formed ‘Man From the Pru’ with Prudential and was CEO of Positive Solutions who were, at the time the largest nationally branded IFA in the UK. He is passionate about delivering a first-class service to clients and believes in holistic advice in order to look after all our clients financial needs.


Susan Puddephatt

Susan is an ex-regulator with a deep understanding of financial services regulation. She also has extensive expertise in risk management and governance across most parts of financial services.

Prior to joining Succession, Susan held a number of senior Risk & Compliance roles, most recently at Tilney Group, and, prior to that, Ardevora Asset Management LLP, Equitable Life and RSA Group. She has also worked as risk and regulatory consultant. Susan is passionate about helping people to be good money managers and is a strong believer in importance of financial planning in that process.


Steve Willis

Steve is a Chartered Accountant with experience working in both practice and industry, specifically Financial Auditing, Corporate Finance (M&A), Banking, and leading finance teams in high growth environments.

Responsible for Finance, Property and Data Intelligence, he is an ardent believer of collaborative working and enabling the Group to deliver a first-class service to clients.

Steve lives in South Devon with his wife and three daughters, he is a keen swimmer and loves being outdoors.


Helen Blackmore

Helen is a member of the CIPD and has been a senior HR and Commercial leader for over 10 years across Financial Services, Technology, Aviation and Hospitality sectors.

Helen has responsibility for all People initiatives throughout our HR and L&D teams. This ranges from Planner Development, Culture, Reward and Recruitment.

In the past she has spent time in HR at Flybe plc, and since 2013 as the Global Head of People Operations at blur Group plc, before becoming Chief Operating Officer with responsibility for both HR and Sales across the USA and EMEA. Helen brings energy and commercial HR skills to support the Group with an ambitious People agenda across Succession’s regional offices.


Adrian Webb

Adrian joined Succession Group in September 2019 as General Counsel and Company Secretary. He is responsible for providing comprehensive in-house legal support to the business and he is also the Group’s data protection officer.

Adrian is a highly experienced corporate and financial services lawyer, with previous appointments as Head of Legal for Police Mutual and Head of Legal for Sun Life Financial of Canada. As GC, Adrian strongly believes that legal advice to the business must be commercial, clear, and focussed on providing solutions to ensure the business achieves its objectives.


Dawn Buckingham

Dawn joined Succession in October 2023 as Group Operations Director, she has over 20 years’ experience working across Finance, Risk & Operations within the Financial Services industry. 

Dawn joined Succession from Investec Bank, where she was the Head of Operations, having previously been the Divisional Chief Operating Officer for the Private Bank.  Prior to Investec, Dawn has held a number Programme Director roles at NatWest / RBS running large change programmes.

Before jumping headfirst into running change initiatives, Dawn worked within the Finance department for an Investment Bank.  Dawn is a qualified Chartered Accountant, having qualified as one of the first cohort to do so outside of the traditional audit route.