NSW welcomes 16 new firefighters

Published: 15th April 2019

NSW has welcomed 16 new firefighters in a graduation ceremony that marked the beginning of a new era for Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW).

The state’s newest firefighters, who include a former police officer, an army officer, a mathematician, a beauty therapist and an electrician, were the first class to graduate from the new FRNSW Emergency Services Academy at Orchard Hills on Friday.

The state-of-the-art Academy opened last year, replacing the FRNSW State Training College at Alexandria.

Minister for Emergency Services, David Elliot congratulated the recruits and welcomed them into the firefighting family.

“These 16 firefighters have signed up for one of the most demanding and important roles in our community and will soon take up positions at fire stations across Sydney and regional NSW,” said Mr Elliot.

“They have proven themselves able to meet the many challenges of the job over months of intense training, from firefighting and road‑crash rescue, to advanced first aid and hazardous materials response.

“They are a special group of men and women and the first of a new generation of firefighters to start their journey and hone their lifesaving skills at the FRNSW Emergency Services Academy.”

Built on a six-hectare site at Orchard Hills, the Academy will soon include a range of purpose-built training props to simulate fire, rescue, hazardous material handling and other emergency situations.

FRNSW Commissioner Paul Baxter said the graduates were a fitting first class for the new Academy.

“These recruits have shown they have the diverse skills, capabilities and talents required to undertake the varied work that our firefighters do – from educating the community about fire safety and providing emergency medical care to responding to natural disasters and hazmat incidents,” said Commissioner Baxter.

“They’ve been trained to be prepared for anything and I know they will uphold the high standards of integrity, courage and professionalism expected of a FRNSW firefighter.”

The following recruits will take up positions at fire stations in Sydney and regional NSW:






Matthew Airey


Kathleen Daly

The Rocks

Sally Andrews


Cody Edwards


Aimee Barnard


Kylie Grimes

Baulkham Hills

Kate Bendyke


Timothy McDonald

City of Sydney

Mitchell Blake


Bonnie O’Donnell

City of Sydney

Billy Carroll


Anne O’Toole


Jessica Cooper

Mount Druitt

Gustavo Panucci


Steven Curran

Broken Hill

Matthew Springall