Gig Guide: Berejiklian back in action at Optus

Brandon How

Gladys Berejiklian takes up her first private sector role since resigning as NSW premier and the University of Sydney has appointed a new deputy vice-chancellor for research.

Former NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian has taken up a newly-created executive role at Optus. Ms Berejiklian has been named as managing director enterprise, business, and institutional. This appointment comes four months after Ms Berejiklian resigned as premier after an investigation by the state’s anti-corruption watchdog into her for potential breaches of public trust in the awarding of grants.

At the time Ms Berejiklian maintained that she “always acted with the highest level of integrity” but would step aside to allow the state to have a stable leader given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Gladys Berejiklian
Gladys Berejiklian has joined Optus in an executive role

Ms Berejiklian was state premier from January 2017 to October 2021, the peak of her almost 20-year political career. She again made headlines last week when leaked messages surfaced, in which Ms Berejiklian appears to call Prime Minister Scott Morrison a “horrible person”. However, she claims to have “no recollection of such messages.”

The University of Sydney has welcomed Dr Emma Johnston as its new deputy vice-chancellor (research), who will start her role in July. Dr Johnston is currently the dean of science at the University of New South Wales where she was also previously pro vice-chancellor (research).

Dr Johnston is internationally regarded in the field of marine science and conservation and is the lead author of the Australian State of Environment Report 2021 due to be released soon. She was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in the 2018 Queen’s Birthday honours.

The federal Department of Health’s chief information officer Daniel Keys is stepping away from the public sector to join Canberra-based IT services provider xAmplify. He will start as the head of futures and innovation on March 1, 2022. This comes after almost 19 years in the public sector.

xAmplify chief executive officer Ken Maxwell described Mr Keys as “an inspiring leader [with] a proven track record in delivering critical services and innovation for the Australian community.”

ASX chief executive officer Dominic Stevens has announced that he will retire this year after six years in the role. Mr Stevens will remain in the role until his successor takes over. During his time, the ASX launched a project to find a blockchain based replacement for its CHESS clearing and lodging system.

The Western Australian government has appointed Nashid Chowdhury as investment and trade commissioner for India and the Gulf. Following onboarding, Ms Chowdhury be based in India from April to help boost exports and attract investment from the region. She brings almost 20 years of Commonwealth, state, and local government experience.

The advisory board of Australia’s offshore petroleum regulator, the National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management, has gained two new members while reappointing two current members.

The new members are former senior government executives Victoria Jackson and Michael Lawson PSM. The reappointed members are Anthea Tinney PSM and Christopher Blackmore.

Revenue NSW, the body that collects fines, taxes, and administers grants, has appointed David Ranasinghe as the new chief digital officer.

Mr Ranasinghe will depart from the chief technology officer role at healthcare provider Healius (formerly Primary Healthcare Limited). He replaces Kathleen Mackay who left last November to join the Royal Automobile Club of Tasmania.

The Department of Education, Skills, and Employment has appointed Alison Dell as assistant secretary. Meanwhile, the Australian Communications and Media Authority has appointed Carole Rowe as people, communications, and governance general manager.

The Office of the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security (IGIS) has appointed Christopher Brookes to assistant IGIS.

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