DTA appoints a new digital chief

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DTA appoints a new digital chief
Peter Alexander

Internal reorganisation underway.

The Digital Transformation Agency has appointed its current chief operating officer Peter Alexander to the role of chief digital officer.

The position has remained unfilled since Paul Shetler abruptly departed the agency last November after a fundamental disagreement with the government's digital minister Angus Taylor.

Shetler, the DTA's former CEO, was relegated to the CDO role when the agency rebadged as the DTA and took over responsibility for whole-of-government IT policy and procurement. He spent just six weeks in his new job before calling it quits.

A DTA spokesperson said the internal reorganisation - led by Gavin Slater, who was appointed as DTA chief in April - that sees Alexander become CDO was intended to 'bring a fresh approach to how the DTA delivers on its agenda'.

"[The agency is] consequently undergoing restructuring and recruiting to get the right people in the right roles," they said.

Alexander will oversee the digital capability building and delivery functions within the DTA, while head of enabling services Radi Kovacevic will become acting chief investment officer. The agency also plans to appoint a chief technology officer within the delivery area.

Alexander's transition to digital chief comes less than a year after he moved to the DTA from Treasury to lead the agency’s corporate functions.

He also picked up ownership for procurement and the digital investment management office along the way, and has spent the last six months spearheading a review of all active Commonwealth IT projects worth more than $10 million.

Prior to his time at Treasury, Alexander was responsible for the Australian Government Information Management Office’s (AGIMO) online services branch.

Critics of the reformed DTA have likened the new-look agency to a mirror of the former AGIMO.

The internal reorganisation comes as the agency continues to haemorrhage staff that were hired during Shetler's reign.

Over the last six months the DTA has lost many of the digital delivery experts that were brought on to transform the public service.

The latest departures, as first reported by InnovationAus, are the head of the Digital Marketplace Catherine Thompson, and head of service design and user research Leisa Reichelt, the DTA confirmed.

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