The appointment is subject to FSA approval and Rough, 57, currently holds two other board positions at Land Securities and Xstrata.
Rough took early retirement from Legal & General Investment Management in 1991, after 12 years at the firm. He started as head of UK equities and was later promoted to group director of investments.
Friends Provident executive chairman Sir Adrian Montague, says: “I am delighted to welcome David to the board.
“He not only brings a wealth of financial services experience to the table, but also has experience in a broader range of industries.
“He has a proven track record in spearheading change for the good of organisations to drive them on to succeed in challenging market conditions.”