Mr Tesch was appointed Deputy Secretary on 1 May 2019. As Head of the Strategy, Policy, and Industry Group he is responsible for:
- devising strategy to give effect to government intent;
- setting the policy frameworks to govern ADF operations and Defence international engagement; and
- working closely with industry to deliver ADF capability and national economic growth.
Strategy, Policy, and Industry Group sits at the core of the Strategic centre. Mr Tesch’s group also rigorously contests the enterprise’s decisions and advice to government to ensure quality outcomes and optimise the impact and benefits of government’s $575 billion investment in Defence.
Mr Tesch comes to this role following a distinguished career as a senior officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT). He most recently served as Australia’s Ambassador to the Russian Federation from March 2016 until April 2019. Prior to this, he held several executive positions in DFAT, including as First Assistant Secretary International Security Division from January 2014 to December 2015. Mr Tesch has also previously served in the Office of the Minister for Trade (1993-1994).
He has previously represented Australia overseas as Ambassador to Germany (2009-2013); Commissioner-General for the Shanghai 2010 World Expo (2008-2009); Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations, New York (2002-2005); Deputy Commissioner-General at the Expo 2000, Hanover (1999-2000); Ambassador to Kazakhstan (1997-1999); and Third Secretary, Moscow (1989-1991).
Mr Tesch holds a Bachelor of Arts degree with Honours from the University of Queensland. He speaks German and Russian.