New NSW Health Secretary named

In other news:

  • Qld Govt review into culture and accountability
  • New President of Anti-Discrimination Board of NSW
  • Gerard Bradley steps down as QTC Chair

NSW Health Deputy Secretary Susan Pearce will take over as the new department head following the departure of Elizabeth Koff.

Susan Pearce

Ms Pearce has been deputy for the past six years and has led the operational aspects of NSW Health’s COVID-19 response, including its testing clinics and vaccination program.

The announcement of her appointment was made on Tuesday by Premier Dominic Perrottet, Health Minister Brad Hazzard and Minister for Regional and Mental Health Bronnie Taylor.

“Ms Pearce is highly talented, has a very successful track record and is passionate about healthcare,” Mr Perrottet said in a statement.

She began her career in NSW Health as a registered nurse in Broken Hill and has previously held the roles of the state’s Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer and Deputy Secretary for Patient Experience and System Performance.

Ms Koff will leave NSW Health on March 4 to take up a role at Telstra Health as managing director.

Interim chief executive at Create NSW

Annette Pitman has been appointed as the interim Chief Executive of Create NSW, the NSW Government agency responsible for arts, screen, culture and cultural infrastructure.

Annette Pitman

Ms Pitman has previously helped deliver the state government’s investment of $2.5 billion in cultural infrastructure and has overseen several projects, including the new Powerhouse Parramatta and Powerhouse Ultimo, Sydney Modern, Walsh Bay and the Theatre Royal.

The new chief executive role was created to bring together the arts and culture, screen and cultural infrastructure arms of Create NSW under a single leadership position.

Ms Pitman will be appointed to a 12-month contract, with the ongoing role to be advertised next year. 

The current head of Create NSW Chris Keely will depart the organisation in March.

New President of NSW Anti-Discrimination Board

Helen McKenzie is the new President of the Anti-Discrimination Board of NSW, which provides the strategic direction of Anti-Discrimination NSW.

Helen McKenzie

Ms McKenzie, an employment lawyer and business leader, was the partner of law firm Ashurst for 25 years.

During her time there, she held a range of leadership positions, including as board member, practice head and Deputy Managing Partner of the Australian firm.

Attorney General Mark Speakman said Ms McKenzie has “an international reputation as one of Australia’s most highly regarded employment lawyers”.

“She has been a trusted advisor to many of the country’s largest organisations in both the private and public sectors and holds an impressive record in business transformation, strategy development and risk management,” he said in a statement.

Ms McKenzie is taking over the role from Dr Annabelle Bennett and her term will be for three years.

Gladys Berejiklian joins Optus

Gladys Berejiklian is moving into life after politics as Managing Director, Enterprise, Business and Institutional at Optus.

In the newly created role, the former Premier will help the telco unlock a greater share of the multi-billion-dollar enterprise, business and institutional markets.

“I am excited and proud to join an organisation that impacts the lives of millions of Australians every day and prides itself in providing outstanding customer service,” Ms Berejiklian said in a statement.

Ms Berejiklian resigned from her role as premier on October 1 when NSW ICAC announced its investigation into a potential conflict of interest over her relationship with former Wagga Wagga MP Daryl Maguire.

She will takes up her role at Optus on February 28.

Department of Health CIO leaves public sector

Daniel Keys has stepped down from his role as Chief Information Officer of the federal government’s Department of Health.

He will take up the role of Head of Futures and Innovation next month at xAmplify, a provider of IT services and sovereign secure AI technologies.

During his time as CIO, Mr Keys led the delivery of Information and Communication Technologies.

Gerard Bradley steps down as QTC Chair

Queensland Treasury Corporation Chair Gerard Bradley is stepping down from his role.

Mr Bradley, a former State Under Treasurer, has worked in the role for a decade.

Queensland Treasurer Cameron Dick said Mr Bradley’s contributions to Queensland have been “very significant”.

“Gerard has given virtually all of his working life to building a better Queensland and we are most grateful for his contribution,” he said in a statement.

“So many major investment decisions by the State Government across the past 40 years have been either signed-off or reviewed by Gerard.”

Mr Bradley was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2021 for distinguished service to public administration, to economic policy and to the community of Queensland.

Former QUT VC to head public sector accountability review

Professor Peter Coaldrake will conduct a review into culture and accountability in the Queensland public sector.

Professor Peter Coaldrake

Professor Coaldrake is a former Vice-Chancellor of the Queensland University of Technology and is currently Chief Commissioner of the federal government appointed Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said reviews are good for governments.

“It is always good to look at things with fresh eyes,” she said in a statement.

“The 21st Century has brought rapid changes, not least in terms of technology. We need to address that.”

The review builds on the 2019 Bridgeman Review and will have the power to make system-wide changes.

Some of the areas it will examine include the culture of the public service in ensuring ethical decision making and the nature of interactions and interdependencies between integrity bodies, the public service and the Executive.

An interim report will be provided within two months and a final report will be provided within four months.

The Queensland government has been under fire recently regarding misconduct allegations involving the government, the public service and the state’s four integrity watchdogs.

Macquarie Government appoints new growth director

Mike Foster

Mike Foster has been appointed as the Director of Strategic Growth of Macquarie Government, part of Macquarie Telecom Group.

The newly created position has been designed to lead Macquarie’s expanding defence and national security capabilities and pursuits, including vertically integrated cyber-security, cloud, data centre and telecommunications services.

In his role, Mr Foster will also help support the policies relating to the Hardening Government IT Initiative which aims to improve cyber-security capability across government agencies.

During his career, he spent over a decade at Fujitsu, where he led growth for the company’s defence business, and also spent six years as a non-executive director of Telstra Clear.

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