Painting and Decorating Association (PDA) appoints former MP and Shadow Health Minister Paul Marsden to the role of chief executive officer.
Mr Marsden will take control of one of the largest trade bodies in the UK, which represents the interests of thousands of painters and decorators - ranging from large-scale contractors through to sole traders.
His priorities for the PDA include raising awareness of the training and making the public aware of the high standards that members need to work to before being allowed in the association.
Mr. Marsden said: "I am delighted and honoured to be given this opportunity to help take forward the PDA.
"I am keen to see new opportunities for young people to enter the profession, and secure high training and qualifications, so that the public and clients can be assured of the highest standards of service from a PDA member.
"In these tough economic times I shall also be listening to painters and decorators across the country about their concerns and lobbying key decision makers to reduce unnecessary red tape, whilst highlighting the need to drive out the cowboys in the profession".
As well as a successful Parliamentary career, which included campaigns for better cancer care and the introduction of innovative road safety measures, the 40-year-old has an extensive background in management consultancy.
A Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute and Member of the Institute of Directors, Mr Marsden brings to the role considerable construction industry experience - which included a managerial role at Taylor Woodrow before being elected to Parliament.
Ken Bull, national president of the PDA, said: "Paul's experience in business strategy, policy and marketing will help lead the association into a new era. We are delighted to have him on board."