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Six state secretaries appointed to Orpo’s Government

Government Communications DepartmentMinistry of Agriculture and ForestryMinistry of Economic Affairs and EmploymentMinistry of Education and CultureMinistry of FinanceMinistry of JusticeMinistry of Social Affairs and HealthMinistry of the EnvironmentMinistry of the Interior
Publication date 29.6.2023 14.35
Press release
Päivi Nerg, Laura Rissanen, Timo Jaatinen, Elina Laavi, Juha Martelius and Teija Makkonen.

In its plenary session on 29 June, the Government appointed Päivi Nerg (Master of Science in Agriculture and Forestry), Laura Rissanen (Master of Social Sciences), Timo Jaatinen (Master of Social Sciences), Elina Laavi (Master of Public Administration), Juha Martelius (Doctor of Social Sciences) and Teija Makkonen (Master of Military Science, Master of Business Administration and Bachelor of Administrative Sciences) to serve as state secretaries.

Päivi Nerg was appointed State Secretary to Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Sari Essayah. The state secretaries to the other three party leaders were appointed on Thursday 22 June. Laura Rissanen was appointed to serve as State Secretary to Minister of Social Security Sanni Grahn-Laasonen, Timo Jaatinen as State Secretary to Minister of Climate and the Environment Kai Mykkänen and Minister of Employment Arto Satonen, Elina Laavi as State Secretary to Minister of Local and Regional Government Anna-Kaisa Ikonen and Minister of Science and Culture Sari Multala, Juha Martelius as State Secretary to Minister of the Interior Mari Rantanen and Teija Makkonen as State Secretary to Minister of Justice Leena Meri. The terms of the state secretaries begin on 29 June 2023 and continue for the duration of the ministers’ terms of office.

At the same government plenary session, State Secretaries Rissanen, Jaatinen and Martelius took an oath of office and State Secretaries Laavi and Makkonen took an affirmation of office.

Päivi Nerg is transferring to the post of State Secretary from her position as Director of Rural Vitality for the Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners (MTK). Nerg has previously served as State Under-Secretary and Director of Administration and Development at the Ministry of Finance and as Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of the Interior. Before her ministerial career, she held leadership positions at the University of Kuopio and the University of Eastern Finland.

Laura Rissanen is transferring to the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health from the Centre Party, where she served as Regional Director for the Helsinki Metropolitan Area, Eastern Uusimaa and Kymenlaakso. Before that, she worked as Director of Education Policy at the Association of Finnish Education Employers. Rissanen has a long career in political background positions. She has served as Secretary General of the National Coalition Party parliamentary group and as Special Adviser to the Minister in three different ministries.

Before his appointment as State Secretary, Timo Jaatinen served as Adviser to the National Coalition Party. Prior to this, he had a long career in leadership positions in various lobbying organisations: more than ten years as CEO of the Finnish Forest Industries Federation, the Finnish Port Federation and the Federation for the Brewery and Soft Drinks Industry. In addition, Jaatinen has served as Special Adviser to the Minister in three different ministries.

In recent years, Elina Laavi has worked as Communications Manager for the National Coalition Party. She has previously worked as Director of Public Relations at the Finnish Pension Alliance TELA, as Director of External Relations at the City of Lahti and as Director of Cooperation for the KUUMA municipalities. Laavi has also previously worked as Special Adviser to a Minister. In June 2023, she was elected Director of Vitality of the City of Lahti. She will be on leave of absence for the duration of her term as State Secretary. 

Juha Martelius is transferring to the post of State Secretary from his position as Deputy Director General at the Ministry of Defence. He has had a long career in central government and served as Research Director at the Ministry of Defence, as Committee Counsel in Parliament, as a Senior Researcher at the Finnish Security Intelligence Service and as Director of the Analysis Division at the Finnish Security Intelligence Service. Martelius has also worked as Special Adviser to a Minister.

Before her appointment as State Secretary, Teija Makkonen served as Assistant to a Member of Parliament. She has had a long career in various positions in the Defence Forces, including at the National Defence University, the Navy Command, and as a Senior Planning Coordinator at the Defence Command.

State secretaries to the ministers assist the ministers in matters relating to political steering and preparatory work. They also assist and represent the ministers in drafting policy outlines and coordinating interministerial matters, harmonising policy positions, implementing the Government Programme in the minister's administrative branch, and handling EU and international affairs. 

Inquiries: Ritva Järvinen, Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 295 160 366, Prime Minister’s Office