Gig Guide: Kathryn Campbell suspension a PM&C decision

Brandon How

Kathryn Campbell has been suspended without pay from her almost $900,000 per annum role as a special advisor to the AUKUS program.

The indefinite suspension of the former Department of Human Services secretary was first reported by the Canberra Times. Ms Campbell oversaw the implementation of the “crude and cruel” Robodebt scheme, as described in the final report from the Royal Commission.

The Royal Commission’s final report included an unreleased sealed section that named individuals involved in the implementation of Robodebt for referrals for civil and criminal prosecution. The list of names has not been made public and is not implying that Kathryn Campbell has been referred for prosecution.

She landed the newly created AUKUS Submarine Taskforce special advisory role a period as secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in June 2022.

In radio interviews with ABC on Thursday, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said the indefinite suspension of Ms Campbell without pay was a “decision made by the Department of Prime and Cabinet and appropriate bodies”.

The Prime Minister declined to provide further details “given the potential legal matters involved”, although he added that the suspension was an “appropriate response”.

Kathryn Campbell at the Robodebt Royal Commission.

Tesla and Technology Council of Australia chair Robyn Denholm has been appointed to the board of healthcare artificial intelligence firm She is also an operating partner at Blackbird Ventures.

Ms Denholm is reportedly among the board members of Tesla that have agreed to return $1.1 billion worth of remuneration to settle a lawsuit levelled by pension fund the Police and Fire Retirement System of Detroit alleging the directors awarded themselves “excessive and unfair compensation”.

Former Tasmanian Premier and Australian High Commissioner to Singapore Will Hodgman is now a corporate advisor for Green Li-ion, a Singapore-based lithium-ion battery recycling technology firm. He has also been working with Singapore-based fintech and digital assets manager Trovio since April.

At the Australian Renewable Energy Agency Marianna O’Gorman has been appointed to the board on a two-year term, replacing Horizon Power chief executive Stephanie Unwin who is reaching the limit on the term of service. Stephen McIntosh has been re-appointed for another term.

Ms O’Gorman is also a non-executive director at Queensland state-owned energy company the Stanwell Corporation and is on the advisory board of think tank the McKell Institute.

The board of the Northen Australia Infrastructure Facility has welcomed Vanessa Elliot to its board. Ms Elliot is an experienced director with over 20 years’ of experience in “economic development, community services, regional and remote project management, town planning and service commissioning,” according to Minister for Northern Australia Madeleine King. She will serve in the role until the end of financial year 2026.

A new seven-member Expert Committee on Aboriginal Health has been appointed in Western Australia to advise the advisory council of the $1.6 billion Future Health Research and Innovation Fund and Medical Research minister Stephen Dawson. The members are as follow:

  • Wendy Casey: WA Department of Health director of Aboriginal Health Policy
  • Peter Miller: Aboriginal Health Ethics Committee human research ethics officer and Aboriginal Health Council of WA member
  • Dr Caitlin White: Aboriginal Health Council of WA public health medical officer
  • Slade Sibosado: Telethon Kids Institute Kulunga Aboriginal Unit community engagement officer
  • Abby-Rose Cox: Kimberley Aboriginal Health Research Alliance evaluation and research manager
  • Professor Pat Dudgeon: National Indigenous Health Research Network member and University of Western Australia School of Indigenous Studies Professor
  • Associate Professor Glenn Pearson: Telethon Kids Institute director of First Nations strategy and University of Western Australia Associate Professor specialising in Aboriginal health issues.

The Australian Research Data Commons has appointed Benedict Chiu as director, services. Mr Chiu is the chief information officer of the Australian Conservation Foundation and is a member of Data61’s National Artificial Intelligence Centre Think Tank.

Former IP Australia director general and Department of Industry deputy secretary Patricia Kelly has been appointed to the council of the Australian Institute of Marine Science and chair of the National Youth Science Forum. She is also the chair of the Australia Square Kilometre Array Regional Centre and the Australian Research Integrity Committee, among other roles.

The Department of Industry, Science and Research has confirmed Dianna Gaetjens in the role of general manager for technology investment. She was previously acting in the role.

The Australian Submarine Agency has appointed Phoebe Greentree as assistant secretary, policy, engagements, and agreements. She moved from the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

Do you know more? Contact James Riley via Email.

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