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Susan Lilleväli to become new Undersecretary for Defence Readiness

31. May 2023 - 11:14
Susan Lilleväli
Susan Lilleväli

Susan Lilleväli will be the new Undersecretary for Defence Readiness at the Ministry of Defence of Estonia, where she will coordinate the work of the Defence Readiness and Defence Resolve Development departments.

"The security situation in our region is extremely difficult, and raising and maintaining defence readiness and willingness are definitely key areas. It is important to us that every resident, company, local government and other institutions has a high level of readiness and desire to protect Estonia. Susan's background and previous experience give me full confidence that we have found a strong leader for this field in difficult times," said Kusti Salm, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Defence.

Susan Lilleväli has nearly seven years of experience in the field of defence and is currently completing her studies at the National Defense University in the United States, where she focuses on strategic management, the design and development of the national security strategy, and the management of resources related to its implementation.

"In Estonia, we have to do more and more efficiently with fewer people than in many other countries, which to ensure national security requires readiness and conscious action from state institutions, local governments, entrepreneurs and individuals. We have a strong will to defend our country, which we must maintain and strive for increasingly comprehensive joint readiness, because this is an important part of our message to the adversary," Susan Lilleväli said.

Before assuming the position of Undersecretary, Susan Lilleväli was in charge of the Ministry of Defence’s strategic communications. She has a Master's degree in Communication Management and a Bachelor's degree in Journalism and Communication from the University of Tartu.

Lilleväli has extensive working experience in the private sector and has completed a one-year professional internship in the field of research and communication in Washington. Previously, she also worked in the Ministry of Social Affairs and then in the Ministry of Defence as a minister's advisor. Lilleväli has completed training at the think tank Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA) in Washington. In 2018, she was awarded the Golden Badge of the Ministry of Defence for her outstanding contribution to the preparation and implementation of Estonia's presidency of the Council of the European Union.

Lilleväli starts her work as Undersecretary for Defence Readiness June 12.

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