Mervyn King, the former Governor of the Bank of England during the recent economic crisis, has been appointed to Aston Villa's board of directors.
Lord King of Lothbury "is a life-long Villa supporter" who watched his first game at Villa Park more than 55 years ago.
Villa chairman Steve Hollis said: "Mervyn successfully steered the Bank of England through the most turbulent economic headwinds in living memory and his appointment to the board is a huge boost as we plan our path back to more successful times."
King said: "I watched my first match at Villa Park more than 55 years ago, and have experienced the highs and the lows since then.
"I shall do my best to help the rebuilding of Aston Villa Football Club as together we return it to its position as one of the top clubs in the world."
Villa are bottom of the Barclays Premier League standings, six points adrift of second-bottom Sunderland and 10 points away from safety.