Gavin Slater will step down as the chief executive of the Digital Transformation Agency at end of the month.
Mr Slater, a Melbournian, has had to face the challenges of commuting weekly to Canberra since he took over the vexed role from Paul Shetler just over a year ago. He will be the fourth person to leave the position — if we also count David Hazlehurst when he was interim chief executive — since the DTA was launched in 2015.
The news comes only a month after Mr Slater returned from his extended leave of absence to complete a business short-course at Harvard University. The absence, first reported by InnovationAus.com, raised eyebrows across government as it came during the government’s the busiest and most critical time of year for any government agency, the lead up to the federal budget.
During his hiatus, Deputy Australian Statistician and former immigration department chief information officer Randall Brugeaud took on the acting chief executive role. Mr Brugeaud will officially return to take over the position from Mr Slater.
Minister for Human Services, Michael Keenan, said on Friday that Mr Slater had played a significant role in helping to drive the government’s digital transformation agenda while overseeing a procurement reform and the delivery of simpler and faster government services.
“Under Mr Slater’s leadership, the DTA has delivered a number of key achievements including developing a robust framework for digital identity and establishing a Digital Investment Office to advise ministers on ICT investments,” he said.
“On behalf of the government, I want to thank him for his contributions and wish him well as he returns to the private sector.”
Minister Keenan added he was confident that Mr Brugeaud’s knowledge of the challenges and opportunities of digital transformation, combined with an ability to work effectively across government, make him ideal to lead the DTA.
“I look forward to working with Mr Brugeaud to deliver the Government’s vision of being one of the top 3 digital governments in the world by 2025,” he said.