• Christian Penny

Senior NSW bureaucrat Amy Brown stands aside amid John Barilaro saga

Updated: Aug 26


Senior public servant Amy Brown has decided to stand aside as Chief Executive of Investment NSW, leaving the position but keeping the more senior post of department Secretary.


The decision comes following the “Head Review” ordered by the Premier's office, which was critical of Ms Brown. The report found she had indirectly concerned then-Minister Stuart Ayres in the recruitment process of former Deputy Premier John Barilaro.

Ms Brown appeared for days of questioning at a Parliamentary inquiry. The inquiry is looking into the appointment of Mr Barilaro to a lucrative Trade Commissioners role in New York.


"These roles have been separated to allow the secretary to focus on a cluster leadership role and an Investment NSW CEO to focus on the core activities of investment attraction." - Spokesperson to The Senior

Mr Barilaro withdrew from the role after his appointment became a scandal, once it was revealed more suitable candidates had been overlooked.


Former Minister for the Department Stuart Ayres was resigned after the review found he may have breached the Ministerial Code of Conduct. He remains the local member for Penrith in Western Sydney.


Spokespeople have confirmed Ms Brown continues a bout of extended leave. It will see her miss budget estimate hearings due through the rest of August and early September.


Following the changes to be implemented upon Ms Brown’s return, the splitting of the role will allow her as Secretary to focus more widely on the department.


A department spokesperson told The Senior, "These roles have been separated to allow the secretary to focus on a cluster leadership role and an Investment NSW CEO to focus on the core activities of investment attraction."


A copy of the DPC Inquiry: Appointment of Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner to the Americas can be viewed here.


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