Department to get third secretary in three months

By Jackson Graham

December 22, 2021

Chris Carr said Jenny West’s status in her job application was ‘well-advanced but not at the end of it’.  (Image: Adobe/ Keitma)

The secretary of NSW’s environment department is leaving the role after just two months and will be replaced by the current chief of NSW Land and Housing Corporation, Michael Cassel. 

Former secretary Kiersten Fishburn’s departure from the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment was revealed in an NSW government announcement of Cassel’s appointment this week. 

The department has had three secretaries in three months, including former secretary Jim Betts, who left the role in October after serving for nearly three years.

Bretts was due to become the state’s top diplomat as the secretary of the Department of Premier and Cabinet, but newly instated premier Dominic Perrottet terminated the appointment and installed Michael Coutts-Trotter instead. 

With Fishburn moving into a deputy secretary role at Transport for NSW, minister for planning and homes Anthony Roberts thanked her for her hard work and leadership during the pandemic response. 

Roberts said Cassel had a career spanning more than 30 years in real estate and construction. 

“I am confident that with Michael’s extensive knowledge we can get on with the job and ensure that communities across the State have access to affordable housing, as we continue to increase supply in NSW,” the minister said. 

“He will be an integral part in helping deliver outcomes across the state as we emerge from the challenges of COVID-19.”


Opportunity knocks for those with Secretary ambitions (but mind your head)

About the author
1 Comment
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
7 months ago

With Min Roberts having a second go at the portfolio, look to the announcement over the next few weeks of his “team” of deputy secretaries that will be announced. Unsurprisnlgy they will be the same deputy secretaries he Appointed when he was first made minister of planning.
The same deputy secretaries who were then sacked for bullying and harrasement of staff and outright incomptence over the last few years after he hd moved onto another portfolio and could not protect them.
As they have all had 12 months from their last payouts (from the tax payers purse), they will walk straight back in as direct appointments to deputy secretary again.

The Mandarin Premium

Insights & analysis that matter to you

Subscribe for only $5 a week


Get Premium Today