Movers & Shakers: new secretary at Department of Industry, Science and Resources

By Anna Macdonald

August 5, 2022

The latest senior public sector appointments from across the country.

The latest senior public sector appointments from across the country.

Senior Executive Service

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At Services Australia, Devika Weereratne has been promoted to general manager.

Paul Kennedy

Band 1

Patrick Hanlon has been promoted to chief security officer at Austrade.

At the Department of Home Affairs, Jason Regan has been appointed commander.

Paul Kennedy takes up the role of chief information and digital officer at the Federal Court of Australia. 

New sec at Department of Industry, Science and Resources

The government has announced a new secretary at the Department of Industry, Science and Resources – Meghan Quinn

In a media release on her appointment, prime minister Anthony Albanese said Quinn has had a “distinguished career in both the private and public sector”.

Meghan Quinn

“I congratulate her on the appointment and look forward to working with her,” the prime minister said.

Quinn’s five-year appointment commences on August 22, with the prime minister recommending her for the job to the governor-general. 

Quinn  previously held the role of as deputy secretary, markets group at Treasury since June 2020, as well as different positions in Treasury, the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, BHP and the Bank of England.

First ABC ombud appointed from ACMA

Fiona Cameron has been appointed as the first ABC ombud, joining from the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) where she was consumer lead.

Cameron has previously held roles at Screen Australia as chief operating officer, general manager at DMG Radio – Nova 100, and general manager and director of corporate affairs at Australian Radio Network.

Fiona Cameron

Chair Ita Buttrose said the ABC was “fortunate” a media executive like Cameron was stepping into the role. 

“The ABC ombud role has been created following the Independent Review of ABC Complaints Handling Procedures and will help strengthen the existing complaints handling processes that reflect the trust placed in the ABC by our audiences.

“We already have the highest standards of complaints handling in place of any Australian media organisation and Fiona’s appointment will assist us in maintaining those standards,” Buttrose said.

On her appointment, Cameron said: “This is an important and challenging role and strengthens the ABC’s commitment to its audience.  I look forward to getting my feet under the desk and grappling with all the many and varied issues.”

She begins her role in September.

20 young Queenslanders named to assist in youth strategy

The Queensland government has named a list of 20 young people to form the Youth Strategy Engagement Group to assist its youth strategy.

Queensland youth affairs minister Meaghan Scanlon said it was key for the government to listen to young people. 

“Young people have a lot to contribute, but if the government isn’t keeping up with how they want to be engaged and the platforms they’re on, then how can we make sure their voices are heard,” the minister said.

The 20 young people are:

  • Michaeline Fauid
  • Jordan Frith
  • Myiesha Yoelu
  • Nicholas Enraght-Moony
  • Isabella Dunn
  • Rahim Mohammadi
  • Caitlin Stewart
  • Xavier Curry
  • Grace Wilson
  • Adeline Lee
  • Alexander Rohde
  • Gracie Hosie
  • Murray Colbridge
  • Hayes Butler-Dupuy
  • Kaira Kapur
  • Summer Farrelly
  • Ojaswi Bansal
  • Sarah Deeb
  • Gavindi Samarasekara
  • Brianna Dunigan

One of the members — Yoelu — said she felt it was a positive step to hear from grassroots youth about grassroots issues. 

“Moving forward, I believe this will be a positive step in closing the gaps between young people and the decision-makers, our government will have the opportunity to listen to the very people who are the future of this country. The power of today’s youth is the wealth of this country tomorrow,” Youelu said.

Arts Centre Melbourne nabs National Portrait Gallery’s CEO

Karen Quinlan has been named CEO of Arts Centre Melbourne, coming from the National Portrait Gallery where she held the same role. 

Karen Quinlan

President of the Victorian Arts Centre Trust Ian Carson said Quinlan was well-respected both in Australia and overseas.

“Her strength working across the arts sector, bringing innovation and fresh thinking, and her deep commitment to diversity and inclusion made her a compelling candidate,” Carson said.

“I am excited and energised by the prospect of leading the extraordinary team at Art Centre Melbourne, embracing change and growth and importantly delivering a world-class experience for the community in my hometown!” Quinlan said of her own appointment. 

Quinlan starts her new role on October 3. 

Australian professor becomes president of International Aids Society

Professor Sharon Lewin, director of the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, has been appointed president of the International AIDS Society (IAS), the peak international organisation for HIV and AIDS professionals.

Sharon Lewin

Lewin’s appointment was announced during the 24th International AIDS conference in Montreal, Canada.

“Progress happens when we come together and unleash the power of our movement. That is why the IAS exists. That is why we need to double down on our efforts to unite the voices of activists, policymakers and scientists,” Lewin said.

Lewin also thanked her predecessor Adeeba Kamarulzaman for her contribution to the society.

“At AIDS 2022, we called on the world to re-engage and follow the science, and I can think of no better leader than Sharon to champion this cause and assume the leadership of the IAS.

“These past two years, as another pandemic overtook the planet, Sharon’s pioneering HIV cure research and analysis have become even more,” the former president said.

New disability council in Victoria

A new Victorian Disability Advisory Council has been established, each member serving a fixed term until July 2025.

The new chair is Chris Varney, with Mija Gwyn serving as deputy chair. 

Reappointees to the board are: Amanda Lawrie-Jones, Caitlin Syer, Gabrielle Hall, and Martin Heng.

Chris Varney

New additions are: Amir Abdi, James Griffiths, Jen Hargrave, Samantha Lilly, Thank (Akii) Ngo, Laura Pettenuzzo, and Diana Piantedosi.

Minister for disability, ageing and carers Colin Brooks the member will advise the Victorian government on issues concerning people with disabilities.

“Listening to the experiences of people with disability are a fundamental part of making Victoria the most inclusive and accessible state,” the minister said.

“I am honoured to lead a diverse group of people passionate about making Victoria a more inclusive place for Victorians with disability,” chair Varney said. 

New executive director for WA Health Translation Network

Psychiatrist Ian Everall has been named the new executive director at the WA Health Translation Network (WAHTN).

WA medical research minister Stephen Dawson said Everall brings three decades worth of experience to the role.

“I am very pleased and proud to welcome Professor Everall as new executive director for the WA Health Translation Network, which continues to provide valuable support for health and medical research throughout the state.

“I’d also like to congratulate outgoing executive director, Professor Gary Geelhoed and wish him a wonderful retirement following his illustrious career in health reform, clinical research and innovation,” the minister said. 

WAHTN’s purpose, according to the government, is to “steer evidence-based health and medical research into changes in policy, practice, training and innovation to benefit the health and wellbeing of all Western Australians”.

NSW firefighter and assistant commissioner retires after 38 years

Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) assistant commissioner Rob McNeil has retired after 38 years as a firefighter.

FRNSW Commissioner Paul Baxter said McNeil’s deployment of the Australian Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) Task Force to Japan after the tsunami and earthquake admirable.

“The potential exposure of radiation saw many international rescue teams evacuate their personnel from the complex disaster, but Rob’s expertise and outstanding decision-making allowed the Australian rescue team to complete its mission and return home safely,” Baxter said.

“Rob exemplifies leadership and his passion and dedication towards his staff and the community has been second to none. FRNSW wishes him all the best in his retirement.”

NSW minister for emergency services and resilience and minister for flood recovery Steph Cooke called McNeil’s career “impressive”.

Changes at Victorian Racing Integrity Board  

Two new members have joined the Victorian Racing Integrity Board: Tim Lyons and Emmett Dunne

John Barrett and Bryan Gurry have been reappointed, both also taking on the roles of deputy chair.

In addition, Elizabeth Clarke has been reappointed as deputy chair.

Former deputy chairs Jacqueline Billings and Peter Young have departed, having not sought reappointment.

Victorian minister for racing Anthony Carbines congratulated the new deputy chair trio and the new members. 

“The government’s creation of the Victorian Racing Integrity Board and Victorian Racing Tribunal were both significant events for racing in Victoria, helping ensure our industry maintains its reputation through the highest level of integrity and independent oversight,” the minister said. 

The board oversees the activities of Racing Victoria, Harness Racing Victoria, and Greyhound Racing Victoria, and works alongside of the racing integrity commissioner.

Western Power chair appointed in WA

Denise Goldsworthy has been named chair of the Western Power board in Western Australia.

Denise Goldworthy

WA energy minister Bill Johnston welcomed Goldsworthy to the role, who previously was a non-executive director on the board.

“Congratulations to Denise Goldsworthy on her appointment as chair. I look forward to working with Denise in the new role at Western Power.

 “I would like to thank Colin Beckett for his time as chair — and stewardship of the organisation as it transformed to meet rapid changes in the energy industry,” the minister said.

The former chair Beckett had been in the role for over seven years. 

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