SkillsEQuipped marks significant progress with new CEO appointment 

Australia’s peak retail body, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) has marked a major milestone in the launch of the federally funded, SkillsEQuipped Jobs and Skills Council (JSC), appointing inaugural CEO, Natalie Turmine. 

After being revealed by the Commonwealth Department of Employment and Workplace relations (DEWR) as the successful applicant of the Industry Clusters – Strengthening Australia’s National Vocational Education and Training System Program in December, the ARA took interim leadership of the establishment of SkillsEQuipped. 

Since then, the ARA has established the key responsibilities of SkillsEQuipped, developed governance and organisational structures, outlined key priorities for the next six months and launched a new website, here. 

The progress thus far culminates in the appointment of CEO Natalie Turmine.   

Ms Turmine brings 27 years of experience to the role, having led both commercial and not-for-profit organisations including her most recent role as Chief Executive Officer of Campbell Page. 

ARA CEO Paul Zahra said Ms Turmine’s appointment ensures SkillsEQuipped is positioned to succeed.   

Natalie is a passionate leader, dedicated to workforce development with a wealth of experience in the delivery of government funded employment and education programs across Australia and advising on future focused productivity and workforce development needs across a range of industries,” Mr Zahra said.  

“We have no doubt she will be a highly successful leader of SkillsEQuipped and will drive better outcomes for the vital industries of retail, personal services, hospitality, tourism, and the arts  

Ms Turmine said the vision for SkillsEQuipped is to develop solutions to workforce challenges across the retail, personal services, hospitality, tourism and arts sectors.   

“Our aim is to understand the challenges facing our representative industries and develop innovative solutions that deliver positive outcomes for learners and employers, and provide industry with a stronger, more strategic voice in shaping the skills of the future.” 

With the appointment of a CEO, SkillsEQuipped is set to ramp up stakeholder engagement across all of the relevant sectors.   

The new entity is a tri-partite, not-for-profit, with a number of employee and employer organisations including some ARA members as foundation members.    

SkillsEQuipped is one of a number of JSCs that will bring together employers and unions to work in partnership with governments and the education and training sectors. 


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