Australian Public Service Commissioner Peter Woolcott has been appointed chair of the Australia and New Zealand School of Government Board.
After serving as a director at the organisation for the past year, Woolcott was named chair at the ANZSOG annual general meeting on Wednesday.
Woolcott replaces New Zealand State Services Commissioner Peter Hughes, whom he said has “skilfully led ANZSOG through a time of great change”.
“He has ensured this strong institution has maintained, and built upon, its core role of helping public servants develop the skills and knowledge they need to deliver for all Australians and New Zealanders,” Woolcott said.
Two new independent members, former Office of Women director Ann Sherry and NZ law commissioner Belinda Clark, have also begun their terms. They replace Robyn Kruk and Dame Karen Sewell.Victorian Department of Premier and Cabinet secretary Jeremi Moule has also joined the board as the Victorian representative.
ANZSOG dean and CEO, Professor Ken Smith, welcomed Woolcott’s appointment and thanked Hughes for his commitment to the “spirit of service”.
“The last year has been a challenging one for ANZSOG as we, like many other agencies, have been forced to make rapid changes to the way we work to respond to the pandemic. The board has played a vital role in strategically positioning ANZSOG, strongly for 2021 and beyond,” he said.
“I look forward to continue to work closely with Peter Woolcott as chair and members of the board as ANZSOG continues to evolve in response to changing demand in the years ahead.”
Woolcott said he was honoured to take on the position.
“I strongly believe in the work ANZSOG does to equip our public servants to respond to any challenge thrown at them,” he said.
“Public servants, in both countries, are committed to service because they want to make a difference in people’s lives. ANZSOG plays a critical role in equipping our public servants to do just that through their public administration education and research.
“I believe there is particular strength in the cohesive approach ANZSOG takes in having both countries, and Australian states and territories, all working toward shaping our governance. I look forward to leading ANZSOG in the next phase of our collective public service future.”