Ward (pictured), will remain as a director during the first quarter of next year until the society’s annual general meeting.
Finance director and deputy chief executive David Pickersgill, who has worked for the society since 1987 and has been a director since 1995, will succeed Ward, subject to regulatory approval.
Chairman Robin Smith says: “Ian has been highly successful in leading the Society since 1995. During these 15 years, we have almost quadrupled in size, achieved profitability each year with the cumulative pre-tax profit total being £481m during this period, our capital and reserves have grown from £161m to £543m and we are now the UK’s fifth largest building society.”
Smith adds: “The board agreed the succession strategy in October last year and we are announcing it now as we are commencing the selection process for a new finance director who we expect to join the board by the end of the year.”
Leeds Building Society has assets of £9.5bn, as at 31 December 2009, and 67 branches throughout the UK, Gibraltar and Ireland.