His Wikipedia bio only mentions his Kodak and Optus careers in passing. The CWU division of the CEPU provides a bit more. In particular, that he was chairman and MD of Kodak (Australia) and was credited with the rescue of Kodak. Kodak was almost a basket case but the Labor Federal Government offered incentives.
On 30 April 1996 he was announced as the new CEO of Optus, and resigned just over a year later on 13 June 1997. My recollection - though journalists should check their newspaper archives - was that he fell out with the Board over his inability to develop a strategy.
After eighteen months as GMD of Telstra's Group Managing Director, Business & International Switkowski was appointed CEO of Telstra on 1 March 1999. When his departure was announced in December 2004 the 7:30 Report noted that every time his departure had been rumoured the share price had picked up.
Despite reports - the latest being by Terry McCrann today - that Dr Switkowski has been "tapped" by Malcolom Turnbull to be Executive Chairman of NBN Co, Mr Turnbull has reminded everyone this is a Cabinet appointment.
It would, however, be an extraordinary appointment. Mr Turnbull has repeatedly said the NBN Co Board needs experienced telco people, especially those who can roll out a network.
This just doesn't seem to be a description of John Howard's former nuclear power adviser. His record as a CEO is;
- Turned Kodak around - temporarily - only after a large subsidy from the (Labor) Government.
- Could not deliver a strategy for Opyus.
- Had a disastrous record of $5 billion in acquisitions at Telstra and ended by contemplating - while still majority owned by the Government - buying the Nine Network.