In 1979, Sarina combined inspiration and desperation to open a small typing school with just nine students.  On graduation, she promised all the students jobs and she delivered.

The ability to execute is what the Sarina Russo brand stands for and why people have trusted it for over 39 years.

Today, the Sarina Russo Group employs over 1000 staff and is a global leader in education, employment and training.

Sarina Russo Job Access (Australia) Is the largest Australian-owned private sector jobactive provider with 93 sites in Queensland, Victoria and New South Wales.
Sarina Russo Job Access (Australia) Is the largest Australian-owned private sector jobactive provider with 93 sites in Queensland, Victoria and New South Wales.

Sarina Russo Apprenticeships

Assist over 35,000 apprentices / trainees and their employers across Australia every year.

Sarina Russo Institute

A Registered Training Organisation educating over 10,000 Australian and International students each year in vocational education and English language courses.  SRI delivers industry focused accredited and non-accredited training, mentoring and job placement services that meets the skilling needs of industry.

James Cook University Brisbane (JCUB)
Delivers programs through a management agreement between Russo Higher Education Pty Ltd and James Cook University. Since March 2006, over 7,500 students from 88 countries have studied foundation, diploma, undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes. Courses include accounting, managerial accounting, finance, business informatics, information technology, e-business, tourism, hospitality, human resources, business administration, marketing, management, entrepreneurship, international business and commerce.

Sarina Russo English – educates thousands of domestic and international students in English Language and Vocational education.  Students successfully gain skills and experience to further their study at University or gain a desired career outcome through up-skilling.

Russo Business School – is the destination for people who want to acquire the business acumen skills required to succeed in the globalised world. Our unique focus on building leaders, gives our students the edge that they need to continue their studies at university or to enter the workforce with that x-factor.

Joblinx
Is a specialised recruitment agency offering exclusive student services to provide work experience, internships, part time and full-time employment opportunities.

VOICE – Psychologists & Allied Professionals 
Provides a wide range of assessments, interventions and training programs for people struggling to get back into the workforce.

Sarina Russo White House
Commercial cleaning and maintenance business  based on five principles – the right communication, the right supervision structure, the right scheduling, the right staff and the right equipment and materials.

The Sarina Russo Foundation sponsors and supports activities to alleviate disadvantage in our local communities through the power of education, employment, health and well-being.

MEET OUR TEAM

Sarina Russo

Founder & Managing Director

Sarina‘s passion, persistence and self-belief transformed her from a fired legal secretary into a fired-up international entrepreneur in education, training, recruitment and property.  In 39 years she has grown her small typing school into a global $100 million business and become Australia’s largest employment and apprenticeship provider employing over 1000 people.

Kathleen Newcombe

Chief Executive Officer - Sarina Russo Group

Kathleen‘s a passionate advocate for lifelong learning, Kathleen has over thirty years of experience in the Higher Education, Vocational Training and Employment sectors both in Australia and the USA. Kathleen also spent three years in leadership roles in the Insurance industry where she successfully managed a Health Insurance business catering to the International Education sector.

Dianne Fletcher

Chief Executive Officer - Employment

Dianne’s passion is to support the disadvantage into work to help them become economically independent.  Prior to joining the Sarina Russo Group, Dianne spent 30 years in the Australian Public Service including 12 years within the Senior Executive Service.

Maria Berlese

National Human Resources Manager

Maria’s skill set is to attract and develop the best talent in the education, training and employment industries.  Maria has the responsibility to foster the careers over 1,000 professional and dedicated staff – in doing so she directly influences the lives, and careers, of tens of thousands of people every year.

Tony Thomas

Director Corporate Finance

Tony has overall responsibility for all financial aspects of the Sarina Russo Group.  His strategic and financial leadership is a great asset for the business particularly when the business experience rapid growth from 27 sites to 93 sites in 2015. Tony has over 32 years’ experience in corporate finance having previously worked for the Brisbane Broncos and Smorgons.

Mark Berlese

Chief Operation Officer ​and Company Secretary

Mark‘s is an absolute motivational powerhouse when it comes to enhancing the lives of Sarina Russo’s customers. His can-do leadership style sparks new ideas that deliver sure-fire results for customers – getting them that job. Mark has undertaken executive studies in the USA at Stanford, Cornell and Harvard University in the areas of Leadership, Marketing and Human Resource Management.

Chris McMahon

Chief Information Officer
Chris is a dedicated Telecommunications professional with a successful background of achievement in the  Australian Communication industry. Chris is a leader who drives outcomes through strong leadership, commercial/technical and strategic innovation through best practice activities.

Steve Wyborn

Chief Operation Officer - Sarina Russo Apprenticeships

Steve is a leader in the employment, apprenticeship and training field with an absolute passion for the role Vocational Education plays in keeping Australian Industry and skills competitive in the increasingly global market .  His key strength is his understanding the industry from both the candidate and employer perspective and assisting organisations to create a skilled workforce.

Justin Sharp

Legal Counsel

Justin has 20 plus years’ legal experience acting exclusively for clients in the Employment, Education and Health sectors. Justin has an in-depth understanding across these sectors including contractual requirements, governance and regulatory, privacy, data security and risk management.

Vanessa Chapman

Quality Assurance

Vanessa has worked in the employment services industry for over 25 years. She joined the Sarina Russo Group in 2004 and is responsible for quality assurance and contractual compliance of government contracts across the group.

In 1979, Sarina combined inspiration and desperation to open a small typing school with just nine students.  On graduation, she promised all the students jobs and she delivered.

The ability to execute is what the Sarina Russo brand stands for and why people have trusted it for over 39 years.

Today, the Sarina Russo Group employs over 1000 staff and is a global leader in education, employment and training.

Sarina Russo Job Access (Australia) Is the largest Australian-owned private sector jobactive provider with 93 sites in Queensland, Victoria and New South Wales.
Sarina Russo Job Access (Australia) Is the largest Australian-owned private sector jobactive provider with 93 sites in Queensland, Victoria and New South Wales.

Sarina Russo Apprenticeships

Assist over 35,000 apprentices / trainees and their employers across Australia every year.

Sarina Russo Institute

A Registered Training Organisation educating over 10,000 Australian and International students each year in vocational education and English language courses.  SRI delivers industry focused accredited and non-accredited training, mentoring and job placement services that meets the skilling needs of industry.

James Cook University Brisbane (JCUB)
Delivers programs through a management agreement between Russo Higher Education Pty Ltd and James Cook University. Since March 2006, over 7,500 students from 88 countries have studied foundation, diploma, undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes. Courses include accounting, managerial accounting, finance, business informatics, information technology, e-business, tourism, hospitality, human resources, business administration, marketing, management, entrepreneurship, international business and commerce.

Sarina Russo English – educates thousands of domestic and international students in English Language and Vocational education.  Students successfully gain skills and experience to further their study at University or gain a desired career outcome through up-skilling.

Russo Business School – is the destination for people who want to acquire the business acumen skills required to succeed in the globalised world. Our unique focus on building leaders, gives our students the edge that they need to continue their studies at university or to enter the workforce with that x-factor.

Joblinx
Is a specialised recruitment agency offering exclusive student services to provide work experience, internships, part time and full-time employment opportunities.

VOICE – Psychologists & Allied Professionals 
Provides a wide range of assessments, interventions and training programs for people struggling to get back into the workforce.

Sarina Russo White House
Commercial cleaning and maintenance business  based on five principles – the right communication, the right supervision structure, the right scheduling, the right staff and the right equipment and materials.

The Sarina Russo Foundation sponsors and supports activities to alleviate disadvantage in our local communities through the power of education, employment, health and well-being.

MEET OUR TEAM

Sarina Russo

Founder & Managing Director

Sarina‘s passion, persistence and self-belief transformed her from a fired legal secretary into a fired-up international entrepreneur in education, training, recruitment and property.  In 39 years she has grown her small typing school into a global $100 million business and become Australia’s largest employment and apprenticeship provider employing over 1000 people.

Kathleen Newcombe

Chief Executive Officer - Sarina Russo Group

Kathleen‘s a passionate advocate for lifelong learning, Kathleen has over thirty years of experience in the Higher Education, Vocational Training and Employment sectors both in Australia and the USA. Kathleen also spent three years in leadership roles in the Insurance industry where she successfully managed a Health Insurance business catering to the International Education sector.

Dianne Fletcher

Chief Executive Officer - Employment

Dianne’s passion is to support the disadvantage into work to help them become economically independent.  Prior to joining the Sarina Russo Group, Dianne spent 30 years in the Australian Public Service including 12 years within the Senior Executive Service.

Maria Berlese

National Human Resources Manager

Maria’s skill set is to attract and develop the best talent in the education, training and employment industries.  Maria has the responsibility to foster the careers over 1,000 professional and dedicated staff – in doing so she directly influences the lives, and careers, of tens of thousands of people every year.

Tony Thomas

Director Corporate Finance

Tony has overall responsibility for all financial aspects of the Sarina Russo Group.  His strategic and financial leadership is a great asset for the business particularly when the business experience rapid growth from 27 sites to 93 sites in 2015. Tony has over 32 years’ experience in corporate finance having previously worked for the Brisbane Broncos and Smorgons.

Mark Berlese

Chief Operation Officer ​and Company Secretary

Mark‘s is an absolute motivational powerhouse when it comes to enhancing the lives of Sarina Russo’s customers. His can-do leadership style sparks new ideas that deliver sure-fire results for customers – getting them that job. Mark has undertaken executive studies in the USA at Stanford, Cornell and Harvard University in the areas of Leadership, Marketing and Human Resource Management.

Chris McMahon

Chief Information Officer
Chris is a dedicated Telecommunications professional with a successful background of achievement in the  Australian Communication industry. Chris is a leader who drives outcomes through strong leadership, commercial/technical and strategic innovation through best practice activities.

Steve Wyborn

Chief Operation Officer - Sarina Russo Apprenticeships

Steve is a leader in the employment, apprenticeship and training field with an absolute passion for the role Vocational Education plays in keeping Australian Industry and skills competitive in the increasingly global market .  His key strength is his understanding the industry from both the candidate and employer perspective and assisting organisations to create a skilled workforce.

Justin Sharp

Legal Counsel

Justin has 20 plus years’ legal experience acting exclusively for clients in the Employment, Education and Health sectors. Justin has an in-depth understanding across these sectors including contractual requirements, governance and regulatory, privacy, data security and risk management.

Vanessa Chapman

Quality Assurance

Vanessa has worked in the employment services industry for over 25 years. She joined the Sarina Russo Group in 2004 and is responsible for quality assurance and contractual compliance of government contracts across the group.