Australia’s Top Experts Selected to Support Skills Squad in Contention for Abu Dhabi

A team of 23 experts have been selected to train the 2017 Skills Squad in preparation for WorldSkills Abu Dhabi 2017.

The 24 young men and women were selected to join the Skills Squad after their successful performances at the 2016 WorldSkills Australia National Competition. The team of experts will work closely with the competitors to ensure they develop their skills and with close to 400 years of combined experience with WorldSkills Australia the expert team will bring unparalleled knowledge and experience to the Skills Squad.

“We have an amazing group of experts this year” says WorldSkills Australia General Manager Brigitte Collins. “Their dedication coupled with their industry and education experience provides
invaluable mentoring and support to the Skills Squad team members. The experts are passionate about showcasing and benchmarking Australian standards against the rest of the world.”

The first stop on the journey to Abu Dhabi is a training camp to be held from 10-13 November in Victoria, where they will meet competitors and develop training plans for the coming months.

Ms Collins added “we have an experienced management team that will work closely with the Experts and the Skills Squad to ensure their training plans gives each competitor the best opportunity of becoming a 2017 Skillaroo and to help WorldSkills Australia achieve its goal of Australia finishing in the Top 10 against the 75 countries that will compete for the title of world champion in Abu Dhabi in 2017.”


3D Digital Game ArtDavid BartoloSydney, NSW
BakeryAshley SchmidtAdelaide, SA
Beauty TherapyNaomi ZadowRiverina Murray, NSW
BricklayingTroy EverettIllawarra, NSW
CabinetmakingJason HindesAdelaide, SA
Car PaintingBrad FranklinSydney, NSW
CarpentryAllen HillSydney West, NSW
Construction Metal WorkCraig McVittieRiverina Murray, NSW
CookingIanthe SmithSydney, NSW
Fashion TechnologyDonna Kirby-Drainllawarra, NSW
Graphic Design TechnologyBrendan HibbertPerth North, WA
HairdressingDonna DeMariaMid Coast, NSW
Heavy Vehicle MaintenanceRaman BadekarSydney West, NSW
Industrial Mechanics MillwrightPeter ButtenshawIllawarra, NSW
IT Software Solutions for BusinessMichael Kirkwood-SmithSydney, NSW
JewelleryDarren MaySydney, NSW
JoineryDion IoriSydney West, NSW
Landscape GardeningMichael BlaschACT
Pâtisserie & ConfectioneryHerve BoutinIllawarra, NSW
Refrigeration & Air ConditioningCarl BalkeBrisbane, QLD
Restaurant ServiceJames SunSydney, NSW
Wall & Floor TilingPeter SteinweissSydney West, NSW
WeldingPaul CondranIllawarra, NSW



Brigitte CollinsTechnical Delegate
Grant StewartTechnical Delegate Assistant
John ShielExpert Mentor
Rachel SullivanCompetitor Team Leader
Dave O’DonnellCompetitor Team Leader