The successor to Leslie Evans as the Scottish Government’s top civil servant has been named.
It has been announced that John Paul Marks will take up the role of permanent secretary on January 5 next year.
He will leave his position as director general of work and health services at the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to take on the job.
Evans will leave the position having served as permanent secretary for almost seven years.
The appointment has been made by the UK Cabinet secretary, Simon Case, with the agreement of Nicola Sturgeon.
“I am grateful to Leslie Evans for her leadership of the civil service for almost the past seven years,” said the First Minister.
“The expertise and insight that Leslie has applied in leading the organisation through the notable and significant challenges of our day – such as EU Exit and the Covid-19 pandemic – has been admirable.
“I join with so many across the Scottish public sector and beyond in wishing Leslie every success for the chapter ahead.”
She continued: “I am delighted to agree the appointment of John Paul Marks as permanent secretary to the Scottish Government.
“John Paul brings a wealth of experience to this senior leadership role from his career in the civil service working across a range of policy and delivery priorities.
“I look forward to working with him over the years ahead as we recover from Covid-19 and deliver on the government’s ambition to build a fairer, greener Scotland.”
Simon Case said that he is looking forward to working with Marks.
He said: “I would like to congratulate John Paul on his appointment.
“His experience at senior civil service level in building teams, delivering complex system reforms, major projects and improving services at scale in the public sector will be invaluable in his new role.
“I very much look forward to working with him as part of the senior leadership of the UK civil service.”
John Paul Marks said that he is looking forward to take up the position.
“I am delighted to take up the role of permanent secretary to the Scottish Government. I am grateful to the First Minister and Cabinet secretary for this exciting opportunity,” he said.
“I would like to thank all the teams at the Department for Work and Pensions for their support and public service over the years.
“I look forward to joining the team in Scotland in the New Year as we do our very best for Scotland in these important years ahead.”
He added: “As the principal accountable officer for the Scottish Government, the permanent secretary is personally responsible to the Scottish Parliament for the exercise of their responsibilities.
“This includes the management of the Scottish Government’s budget and the economic, efficient and effective use of all related resources.”