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Yeend named to head PM's


The Government has moved swiftly in appointing Mr Geoff Yeend to succeed the late Sir Alan Carmody as Secretary of the Depart ment of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.

The appointment of Mr Yeend,

who had been acting in the posi tion since Sir Alan's death last week, was announced yesterday at about the time that he, and the Prime Minister, Mr Frascr, left Australia for talks in Japan.

A decision on Sir Alan's re

placement was not expected until

the weekend or next week. The chairman of the Public Service Board, Mr Shann, was expected to convene a committee of per manent heads to consider can didates for the post during the Prime Minister's absence in Japan.

Mr Yeend, 50, has spent most of his career in the department which he now heads. A former pupil of Canberra High School, he joined the then Department of Post-war Reconstruction in his

teens, before enlisting in the Sec

ond AIF in 1945.

Back in Canberra, Mr Yeend rejoined Post-war Reconstruction, and earned a Bachelor of Com merce degree through the then Canberra University College. In 1950, following the abolition of his initial department, he joined the Department of the Prime Min ister, as it then was.

His progress since then has been steady, if not quite spectacular. From 1952—1955 he served as private secretary to the then Prime Minister Mr (later Sir Robert) Menzics. During 1958-60, he was assistant secretary at Australia

House in London.

In 1961 Mr Yeend was ap

pointed an assistant secretary at. Prime Minister's, and six years later a first assistant secretary. In 1972 he was appointed one of its deputy secretaries. He has lately been a deputy secretary, on a first division salary.

For several years, Mr Yeend has been at the centre of the gov ernmental machine, responsible for translating Cabinet decisions into action. He has a reputation, shared with few other public ser vants, of being not only able to

Mr Yeend

define goals, but immediately to chart a path through the maze of the bureaucracy and Parliament to their fulfilment.

In style Mr Yeend will provide a sharp contrast with his predeces sor. It is likely that under his leadership the Department of the

Prime Minister and Cabinet will prove more subtle than it has been recently. But it is unlikely to relin quish any of the effective power it has gained during that period.