Deputy Secretaries

Linsey Farrell

Linsey Farrell has been Deputy Secretary for Education Policy and Children’s Services at the Department of Education since October 2021. 

In this role Linsey has responsibility for a range of education policy areas including Early Years, Children and Youth; Curriculum, Qualification and Standards; Inclusion and Wellbeing;  and Promoting Collaboration, Tackling Disadvantage.

Prior to moving to this post, from 2003 Linsey held various posts within The Executive Office.

Lianne Patterson

Lianne Patterson is Deputy Secretary for Resources, Reform and Infrastructure at the Department from 8 March 2019.

In this role Lianne has responsibility for Finance, Investment and Infrastructure, Area Planning, Admissions and Shared Campuses, Corporate Services and Governance, Analytical Services and Education Workforce Development.

Lianne is a Chartered Accountant and previously worked in Deloitte and PricewaterhouseCoopers before joining the Civil Service in 2005.  She was previously Deputy Secretary in the Department for Regional Development and prior to taking up her current post was the Director of Justice Delivery in the Department of Justice.

John Smith 

John was appointed as Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Department of Education in September 2014.  His Group includes lead responsibility for Infrastructure, Transport, Food and Recovery.  Prior to joining DE, John was Finance Director in the Department of Employment and Learning (DEL) and before that he held a similar post in the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.


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