The BBC’s deputy director general Anne Bulford, the first woman to hold the role, has decided to leave the corporation in the spring.
Bulford rejoined the BBC as managing director of finance and operations in 2013, climbing to become the BBC’s number two in 2016, having first worked for the corporation from 1993 to 1999.
She will go on to pursue a portfolio of non-executive roles.
BBC director general, Tony Hall praised her as an “inspirational leader” who had “brought real insight and determination” to changing the BBC.
Bulford was responsible for all the finance, HR, legal, risk and technology functions of the corporation, managing its strategy, marketing and audience activities, as well as serving on the board of Children in Need.
Added Hall: “Her achievements at the BBC are many – she has ensured the BBC continues to innovate and deliver hugely popular services to the public. She has vastly improved the BBC’s efficiency to industry-leading levels. She has led a transformation in the BBC’s working practices.
“Anne leaves the BBC a stronger organisation than the one she joined six years ago. She has been a first-class colleague and an absolute pleasure to work with. I wish her every success for the future.”
Bulford said: “It’s been an honour to be the first woman deputy director general of the BBC and I’m proud of what we’ve achieved since 2013.
“The BBC is an amazing organisation, with so many talented people. I feel I’m leaving the BBC in a stronger position and I’d like to thank Tony, my colleagues and especially all my teams for their contribution and hard work.”
The BBC said it would set out the next steps for her post in due course.
Bulford previously served as chief operating officer at Channel 4, director of finance at the Royal Opera House. While working for the BBC during the 90s, Bulford held various roles including finance director for BBC Regional Broadcasting and BBC Production.