Jo Farrar is leaving her post of director general for local government and public services at the Department for Communities & Local Government to become chief executive of HM Prisons and Probation Service.
She takes up new post on 1 April, and said: “Early in my career, my work in prisons and probation gave me a lasting commitment to public service and a passion to make a difference. I am delighted to return.”
Ms Farrar was chief executive at Bath & North East Somerset for four years before she joined MHCLG in June 2016.
Prior to that she was chief executive at Bridgend CBC from 2007 and worked earlier in her career at Cardiff Council and Camden LBC.
She was also deputy director in the Cabinet Office from 2000 to 2003, but began her career in 1987 in the Parole Unit of the Prison Service.
Communities secretary James Brokenshire said: “I am extremely grateful to Jo for her relentless dedication and commitment to local government during a period where the system has faced real challenges.”
The MHCLG was unable to say what arrangements would be made to appoint a successor to Ms Farrar.