Amy Brown departure from Investment NSW ‘not a resignation’

The NSW bureaucrat responsible for the controversial appointment of John Barilaro to a senior US trade role is currently on leave, with her position at the helm of Investment NSW to be handed to someone else.

Amy Brown

Amy Brown was the CEO of Investment NSW and secretary of the Department of Investment, Enterprise and Trade when the job of Senior Trade Commissioner to the Americas was offered to a highly qualified female candidate before being rescinded and given to Mr Barilaro, the former NSW deputy premier, shortly after he announced his departure from government.

Mr Barilaro gave up the trade job after details over the circumstances surrounding his recruitment emerged.

An independent report has raised questions about Ms Brown’s role in the saga and whether she breached codes of conduct by not keeping the then minister Stuart Ayres at arms length during recruitment.

An Investment NSW spokesperson said in a statement on Tuesday that Ms Brown would no longer be CEO of Investment NSW, but said she had not resigned and would keep her role as department secretary.

Ms Brown had decided on August 11 to “separate the roles”, the statement said.

“These roles have been separated to allow the Secretary to focus on a cluster leadership role and an Investment NSW CEO to focus on the core activities of investment attraction,” the spokesperson told Government News.

 “Due to the scale and significant nature of the work involved in both positions, the role of Investment CEO has been separated out from the Secretary role description, title and accountabilities.

“This brings Investment NSW into alignment with Create NSW and Hospitality and Racing, with the three groups headed up by a CEO reporting to the Secretary.”

The statement said Ms Brown was currently on leave. Lisa Braid will step in as acting secretary and Katie Knight will be Interim CEO of Investment NSW.

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