Comms dept secretary Drew Clarke the new PMO chief of staff

By Harley Dennett

Tuesday September 15, 2015

Malcolm Turnbull is bringing his top public servant in the Communications portfolio with him to his new office digs.

Department of Communications secretary Drew Clarke PSM has been tapped on the shoulder to become chief of staff in the Prime Minister’s Office.

Tony Nutt, who was John Howard’s private secretary, will lead the transition.

Clarke began his public sector career as a surveyor working in Australia and Antarctica. Before being appointed to run the Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy in the Gillard government, he ran the Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism, and before that headed its the Energy and Environment Division, was executive general manager of AusIndustry.

He was awarded a Public Service Medal in 2009 for his work in energy market reform and clean energy.

Peta Credlin out

Tony Abbott’s PMO chief of staff has not been a popular figure, both in the media and public service.

The Mandarin has heard repeated stories of Credlin’s management of the inner star chamber, delaying essential appointments by up to 6 months in many cases and frustrating those in the public service who rely on the work undertaken by statutory and part-time office holders.

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