Ashley demonstrates innovation in the kitchen through experimenting with bush food that results in special dishes such as the popular sweet potato and macadamia salad. He encompasses the spirit of learning through offering his creativity to colleagues.
Ashley discovered his passion for cooking and bush foods in Echuca in Victoria when he took the opportunity to participate in the Indigenous business organisation Outback Academy's RESPECT program.
He began studying culture and bush food with Yorta Yorta Elders and Aboriginal chef Mark Olive while undertaking work experience with Yenbena RTO, Bendigo TAFE, and the Moama Bowling Club. He transferred to Tjapukui Aboriginal Cultural Park in Cairns where he along with his family now live.
Ashley with Tjapukai and the Outback Academy are committed to mentoring other Indigenous youth by leading through example.
Ashley’s leadership at Tjapukai continues to develop as illustrated through assembling a team of two to enter the Nestle Golden Chef Hat Award competition. He demonstrates delegation skills and utilises his team around him using clear and simple directions.
His seniors and colleagues say they love working with him for his positive attitude, a quality they believe will take him far.