A NSW Government website


Michael (Mick) Cassel
MProDev, GradCertAppFin, BConMgt (Build)(Hons), GICD

Michael (Mick) Cassel, Secretary portraitMick was appointed Secretary of the Department of Planning and Environment in December 2021.

Mick has thirty years’ experience in the construction and real estate industry, and for 15 years served as a permanent firefighter in the NSW Fire Brigade (now Fire and Rescue NSW). He has expertise in managing complex stakeholders and delivering city-changing outcomes, and is passionate about creating opportunities that encourage and support thriving communities.

Mick formerly led the Land and Housing Corporation (LAHC) as Chief Executive, delivering greater access and choice of housing, and addressing social housing shortages across the state.

Before joining LAHC, Mick help positions as Chief Executive of the Hunter and Central Coast Development Corporation (HCCDC) and Program Director of the Revitalising Newcastle program, where he led significant and sustained urban transformation and economic revitalisation programs, including the Light Rail.

Mick is a graduate of the renowned Harvard Business School’s Advanced Management Program. He also holds an Executive MBA from the Australian Graduate School of Management (UNSW), a Master of Property Development, and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Our leadership team

The leadership team brings a wealth of experience and knowledge in urban and regional planning, natural resources, environment, heritage, Aboriginal and social housing, and governance.

The team sets the strategic direction for the cluster, delivering an integrated approach across the department to support the efficient and effective delivery of government priorities for NSW.

Dr Liz Develin
Chief Executive Officer, Sydney Olympic Park Authority

Atticus Fleming AM
A/Coordinator General, Environment and Heritage

Mel Hawyes
Deputy Secretary, Crown Lands

Somerset Hoy
A/General Counsel, Deputy Secretary, Governance and Legal

Amanda Jones
A/Chief Executive Officer, Water

Bianca Jordaan
Chief Digital and Information Officer

Amanda McCarthy
Director Aboriginal People and Cultural Affairs

Marcus Ray
Deputy Secretary, Planning

Shaun Smith
Deputy Secretary, Corporate Services

Leon Walker
Deputy Secretary, Homes, Property and Development

Gail Connolly
A/Deputy Secretary, Office of Local Government

Key functions and executives

The cluster has a diverse portfolio with over 8,000 employees and around $81 billion of state assets.

Key groups, agencies and functions



Marcus Ray, Deputy Secretary

Monica Gibson, A/Deputy Secretary
Planning and Land Use Strategy

Felicity Greenway, A/Deputy Secretary
Planning Policy

Amanda Fairley, A/Deputy Secretary
Delivery, Coordination, Digital and Insights

David Gainsford, Deputy Secretary
Development and Assessment

Abbie Galvin, Executive Director
Government Architect 

Hannah Shalbaf, A/Executive Director
Housing Supply and Infrastructure

Raema Melverton, A/Executive Director
Stakeholder Engagement and Economic Recovery

Independent Planning Commission
Office of Independent Planning Commission

Environment and Heritage

Atticus Fleming, A/Coordinator General

Naomi Stephens, A/Deputy Secretary
National Parks and Wildlife Service

Brendan Bruce, A/Deputy Secretary
Biodiversity Conservation and Science

Louisa Mamouney, A/Executive Director
Credits Supply Taskforce

Mia Garrido, A/Executive Director
Governance, Strategy and Coordination

Sam Kidman, Executive Director
Heritage NSW 

Suzie Christensen, Chief Executive
Lord Howe Island Board

Erin Giuliani, Chief Executive
Biodiversity Conservation Trust

Cameron Kerr, Chief Executive
Taronga Conservation Society

NSW Environment Protection Authority (NSW EPA)

Tony Chappel, Chief Executive Officer


Amanda Jones, A/Chief Executive Officer

Jason Gordon, A/Chief Executive Officer
Water Infrastructure NSW

Kaia Hodge
Executive Director, Strategy and Policy, Water

Amanda Chadwick
Executive Director, Performance, Water

Giselle Howard
Executive Director, Water Planning

Graham Attenborough
Chief Operating Officer, Water

Mitchell Isaacs
Chief Knowledge Officer, Water

Grant Barnes, Chief Regulatory Officer
Natural Resources Access Regulator

Homes, Property and Development

Leon Walker, Deputy Secretary,
Chief Executive Officer 

Property and Development NSW

Simon Newport, Chief Executive
Land and Housing Corporation

Famey Williams, Chief Executive
Aboriginal Housing Office

Neisha D’Souza, Executive Director PDNSW
Advisory & Transactions and Strategy & Analytics

Peter Graham, Executive Director
Environmental Services Group

Stace Fishwick, Executive Director
Commercial Development and Management

Vy Nguyen, Executive Director
Precinct Development

Stewart McLachlan,
Chief Executive Officer
Valuation NSW

Crown Lands

Melanie Hawyes, Deputy Secretary

Jennifer Hickey, Chief Executive 
Cemeteries and Crematoria

Mark DeWeerd, Executive Director 
Aboriginal Strategy and Outcomes

Office of Local Government

Gail Connolly, A/Deputy Secretary 
Office of Local Government

Sydney Olympic Park Authority

Dr Liz Develin, Chief Executive Officer

Hunter and Central Coast Development Corporation (HCCDC)

Valentina Misevska, Chief Executive

Corporate functions

Shaun Smith, Chief Operating Officer 
Corporate Services

Chris Martin, Chief Financial Officer

Bianca Jordaan, Chief Digital and Information Officer

Caroline Myers, Executive Director
Property, Procurement, Safety and Wellbeing

Kyleigh Laughlan, Executive Director
Performance, Experience and Communication

Rochelle Davis, Executive Director
Shared Services

Mileva Strachov, A/Executive Director
People and Culture

Adam Wellings, Executive Director
Major Projects


Somerset Hoy, Acting General Counsel, Deputy Secretary
Governance and Legal

Madeleine Thomas, Deputy General Counsel
Planning, Environment and Resources

Brendon Jenkins, A/Deputy General Counsel
Property and Commercial

Simonne Daly, Executive Director

Erin Gavin, Director
Planning and Resources Litigation


Office of the Secretary

Douglas Walther, Executive Director
Ministerial and Government Services