Meet the Team
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Des Ong


Des has spent 20 years in both the corporate and not-for-profit sectors as a senior leader of large teams, while coaching individuals and teams towards success. He specialises in the areas of facilitation and coaching dynamics, emotionally intelligent leaders, cross-cultural understanding and engagement (CQi), change management processes, and strategy. 

'I love seeing life changes that emerge from the coaches and students through the Max Potential program. When one of our participants gain the "AHA" moment and you can see the deep effect
it has over their life, it is both encouraging and rewarding.'

Michelle Farrall


Michelle is a strategic planning, brand, communications and culture professional with 20 years’ experience leading consultancies in the corporate, not-for-profit, education and international development sectors. 

'I enjoy walking alongside people and asking the right questions to help them get where they want to be. It’s about finding simplicity out of complexity; it’s so energising when people find that clarity.'

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Carolyn Altman


Carolyn has worked in both the corporate and not-for-profit sector for over 30 years in the areas of administration, customer service and management.

'It's great hearing the stories about the changes it makes in the lives of not just the Young Adults but the Community Coaches as well, and also seeing the lasting legacy it leaves in the community.'

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Dee Raquel Joma


Dee has 20 years’ experience in the corporate world, 10 of those years as a professional coach, working with a wide variety of organisations, industries and individuals. She has managed and developed many executives and employees, coaching them on leadership skills, effective communication styles, goal achievement and personal and professional development.

'Max Potential teaches the adults coaching skills that can be applied in all areas of their lives. Through the process of coaching, the young adults are exposed to a new way of thinking, behaving, planning and achieving goals. Being a part of that is something to be proud of!'

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Rob Feeney


Since 2004, Rob has been Senior Pastor/Leader of Gracepoint Christian Church located in the Sydney’s eastern suburbs. Rob has also completed a professional Life Coach training and accreditation course with Life Transforming Leadership Coaching.

'It’s all in the name: Max Potential is an opportunity to embrace and engage with the maximum potential we all carry. It’s more than a program, it’s a series of empowering relationships all
focused on achieving success, both in individuals and communities.'

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Kirsten Barnett Brown


Kirsten has a background in areas such as Broadcast Media and Education in both Tertiary and Vocational sectors. She lives in the Blue Mountains and works on community initiatives for women.

'I love seeing the change in each participant, whether that be around confidence, time management, values or positive thinking - they do not leave the program the same way they came in!'

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Damian Walsh


Damian has a background in Chemical Engineering and has completed his MBA. He has worked in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide as well as the UK in many roles including Operations Manager and General Manager. He enjoys working with individuals and teams to optimise business performance and support personal development.

'Max Potential provides an opportunity to support members of the community to identify and set their goals - and to develop confidence to achieve them and expand their horizons through a structured development program. I love seeing a student moving from initially lacking self-confidence to being aware of what they have achieved.'

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Cynthia Painter


Cynthia has over 20 years’ experience in national corporations as a Learning and Development Specialist before adding a suite of coaching skills including Master Practitioner and Trainer of NLP.

'The opportunity to see young people and our coaches push themselves and develop in a well-rounded way. They push their limits and develop in ways that will continue to show fruit throughout
their lives.'

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Ruth Fordyce


Ruth is a registered psychologist and has worked in private practice for the last 10 years, seeing individual clients, running groups and presenting training. She also has a passion for working with various community groups to support wellbeing and enhance strong healthy relationships. 

'I love that Max Potential offers both community coaches and emerging young leaders a process for discovering more of who they want to be and where they want to go in life. The skills and insights gained will continue to make a difference across the lifespan of each participant!'

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Stephen Welsh


Steve has 35 years of experience as a professional in the construction industry in various roles as a contractor, client and consulting project manager. He is an owner and director in two businesses that consult to the construction industry, and another specialising in software development. He also holds a degree in theology and is a Certified Christian Leadership Coach.

''There is something about seeing the world through the eyes of young people – hope and optimism, challenge and opportunity, fresh eyes for innovation in a changing world. They inspire and energise. Max Potential has shown me our world is in good hands!

IMPORTANT: If you want to apply for the Max Potential program as a young adult OR a community coach, then click here to complete the full application form online.

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