Gig Guide: Defence seeks new CIO

Brandon How

The Department of Defence has begun searching for a new chief information officer to lead its ICT strategic direction, although incumbent Stephen Pearson is yet to vacate the role.

With several transformative projects ongoing, the department put out the call for a “high-performing senior executive to fill the critical role” on Thursday.

According to a Defence spokesperson, Mr Pearson is currently employed on a five-year term as a non-ongoing employee, which will conclude in early 2023. The department declined to comment further.

Mr Pearson has served as the chief information officer since February 2018. Prior to joining Defence, he spent just less than a year as Lattice Energy’s, formerly Origin Energy’s oil and gas business, head of transformation and chief information officer.

Across his extensive career, Mr Pearson has also been chief information officer at Orica, director of Newcrest Mining’s enterprise system strategy, and director for the Coles (Food and Liquor) Supply Chain Transformation Program.

Incumbent Department of Defence chief information officer Stephen Pearson. Image: LinkedIn

The University of Technology Sydney’s (UTS) Human Technology Institute has appointed respected data scientist Professor Sally Cripps as director, joining the likes of professors Nicholas Davis and Edward Santow on the institute’s senior leadership team. She will also work as a professor of mathematics and statistics at the university’s faculty of science.

Professor Cripps’ moves from CSIRO’s Data61, where she has been research director for analytics and decision sciences since August 2021. She was also previously the director of the Australian Research Council (ARC) Training Centre in Data Analytics for Resources and Environments between 2019 and 2021, as well as an ARC future fellow between 2014 and 2018.

UTS Pro Vice-Chancellor (social justice and inclusion) Professor Verity Firth said Professor Cripps’ work “represents the very best of academic thinking and she has a unique insight to the challenges of complex social issues facing industry and government”.

Nicholas Moore, the current Financial Regulator Assessment Authority and Screen Australia chair, has been appointed Australia’s special envoy to South-East Asia. Mr Moore will lead the development of the federal government’s Southeast Asia Economic Strategy to 2040, which will set a roadmap to boost two-way trade and grow Australian investment.

Mr Moore retired after a 32-year career at Macquarie Bank in 2018, with ten of the 32 years spent as chief executive. He is also the chair of The Centre for Independent Studies, The Smith Family, Willow Technology Corporation, the National Catholic Education Commission, the Markets Taskforce Expert Advisory Panel (within the Commonwealth Treasury).

The latest round of the Superstars of STEM program will feature 60 women and non-binary scientists following a competitive application process. Joining the program in 2023 and 2024, scientists will receive the support needed to become “sought-after media commentators as experts in their fields” in a bid to bring diversity to science communication.

Among the new participants is Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Hub chief executive Associate Professor Cori Stewart, food scientist Dr Samantha Swayer, and mathematical epidemiologist Dr Camelia Walker.

ARM Hub chief executive Cori Stewart

At the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman, board director Julie Hamblin has been reappointed for another three years. Among several other board and chair responsibilities, Ms Hamblin is the deputy chair of the Australian Research Integrity Committee.

Telstra group executive, transformation, communications and people Alex Badenoch will depart after six years in the role and almost 12 years with the company. Ms Badenoch will vacate the role on December 23.

The first successful candidate for the NSW Public Service Commission’s first Board Observership Program is Dalia Spiers, who is currently a senior project officer at Aboriginal Affairs NSW. The program is aimed at improving board diversity while developing the participant’s expertise in board directorship.

The new National Disability Insurance Scheme Quality and Safeguards Commission assistant commissioner legal and integrity is Kenneth Teoh, who moves from the Therapeutic Goods Administration.

The new Australian Bureau of Statistics general manager of the social statistics division is Michael Smedes.

Gavin Rawlins has been promoted to a senior executive role at the Department of Defence’s Joint Systems Division Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group. Meanwhile, David Yardley has been promoted to the role of assistant secretary in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

At the Department of Home Affairs, Scott Weston has been appointed assistant secretary, external budgets and revenue. He moves from the Department of Health and Aged Care.

Do you know more? Contact James Riley via Email.

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