Secretary to the Treasury Caralee McLiesh has announced the appointment of Leilani Frew (pictured) as Deputy Secretary Commercial and Financial and the secondment of Dominick Stephens as Deputy Secretary Chief Economic Advisor.
“I am delighted that Leilani Frew and Dominick Stephens will be joining us at the Treasury. They both bring great expertise and experience to their roles, and I look forward to welcoming them into our senior leadership team,” says Dr McLiesh.
“These are two very important positions for the Treasury’s work of lifting living standards for all New Zealanders.
“As Deputy Secretary Financial and Commercial, Leilani Frew will be responsible for the Capital Markets and Commercial, Infrastructure and Urban Growth teams.
“Dominick Stephens will join the Treasury on secondment from Westpac New Zealand until the end of this year. He takes on the Chief Economic Advisor’s responsibilities for ensuring that the Treasury’s policy advice on lifting New Zealand living standards is supported and strengthened by sound economic theory and evidence.
“The Treasury is the government’s lead economic and financial advisor. In the context of COVID-19 and its impacts, it’s more important than ever for New Zealand’s intergenerational wellbeing that we fulfil our role with excellence. Leilani Frew and Dominick Stephens have demonstrated professional and personal qualities to help us do just that.
“I am grateful to the many high-calibre candidates who expressed an interest in these two Deputy Secretary positions. I would also like to particularly express my thanks to Andrew Hagan, who has done an exceptional job stepping up as the acting Deputy Secretary Commercial and Financial for the Treasury,” says Dr McLiesh.
Leilani Frew is currently Chief Executive of the Infrastructure and Project Financing Agency (IPFA) for the federal government of Australia. The agency she leads drives the commercial and financial ability of the Australian Government as a significant investor in national infrastructure and major industry initiatives. She also holds board and committee positions with Infrastructure Partnerships Australia, International Project Finance Association and the Committee for Economic Development of Australia.
Prior to this, Leilani Frew held several senior leadership positions within the New South Wales Treasury, where she led the teams delivering the State’s major infrastructure projects, social and affordable housing initiatives, services commissioning reforms and was Chair of the Steering Committee which oversaw the sale of the WestConnex project. She has held senior positions in global investment banks, Moelis & Company and RBS Australia, and in the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and commenced her finance career in Queensland Treasury Corporation. She holds New Zealand and Australian citizenship.
Leilani Frew will join the Treasury in April, with timing subject to COVID-19 restrictions.
Dominick Stephens has been Chief Economist at Westpac New Zealand for the last decade, leading its team providing forecasts and research on the New Zealand economy. He is a respected analyst, advisor and commentator on a range of economic and market issues, from housing policy to monetary policy and climate change. His responsibilities include membership of Westpac’s Sustainability Steering Committee. He was formerly an Economist in the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s forecasting team and Modelling unit.
Dominick Stephens’ secondment to the Treasury is from 15 March until the end of December 2021. This covers the period of a study sabbatical for the Treasury’s incumbent Deputy Secretary Chief Economic Advisor, Tim Ng.