The Australian Shop & Office Fitting Industry Association (ASOFIA) recently recognised the efforts of several young shopfitters and office fitters at the Shopfitting Industry Apprentice of the Year Awards program.  

Sponsored by Asset Flooring Group, the ASOFIA/Thomas Brown Shopfitting Industry Apprentice of the Year Award was handed out at the recent ASOFIA conference in New Zealand.  

Thomas Bennett, a fourth-year apprentice at Strike Shopfitting in Victoria won the Apprentice of the Year Award.  

State winners from New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia are being honoured at their own state award ceremonies.  

Nicholas Richardson of Ryder Shop & Office Fitting Pty Limited, Timothy Bartorillo of Benga Designs and Brae Kunzil-Rix of Kingman Designs received recognition as part of the awards program.  

ASOFIA CEO Gerard Ryan sees the program as beneficial for companies while encouraging the apprentices themselves.  

He says that the contestants are the next generation of shop- and office-fitters in Australia.   Ryan adds that the incentives and rewards provided to them for their contribution to the industry will motivate them tremendously.  

In addition to the awards program, the association will be launching a new membership type that allows school leavers, apprentices and trainees to be part of the shopfitting and office-fitting community.  

The new membership will provide educational opportunities, assist in job searches as well as offer mentoring and networking support within the industry.