Alan Burns

Managing Director, Principal
BE Mech. , FIE.

Alan has held a number of Senior and Executive Management roles, led large tenders and delivered complex long term projects in various industry sectors. His experience span technical, manufacturing, contracts and project and construction management roles in construction, advanced manufacturing and heavy engineering (rail and steel), infrastructure construction (commercial and industrial), steel making and aircraft industries in Australia and abroad.

Alan is a past Chair and board member of the Australian Railway Industry Corporation (ARIC) and a past founding trustee of the Caroline Chisholm Education Foundation.

Raphael Cadars

Director, Principal
Masters Engineering/ Metallurgy, Bachelor Mathematics and Physics, MBA

Raphael is a Senior Consultant with Strategic Connections Group, and Principal in Project Management and Project Engineering with experience in process control in manufacturing and light rail rolling stock, tenders and planning. Raphael is leading our increasing involvement in asset monitoring.

Raphael has experience on light and heavy rail project delivery and with assignments in Europe and South Asia.

Quentin Mercier

Senior Consultant Supply Chain
Bachelor in Transport Logistics, Bachelor in Business and Administration (Management)

Quentin has recently joined Strategic Connections Group as Supply Chain Senior Consultant. Quentin brings extensive hands-on experience in international transport & logistics, warehousing and project logistics management.

Quentin supports Strategic Connections Group to support Clients with their Supply Chain systems, in order to maintain and improve their market share, develop their competitive edge while limiting expenses.

He combines exceptional customer service and negotiation skills, solid project logistics management experience, with strong operational and service performance strategy knowledge.


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Alex Best

Grad. Cert. Project Management, Victoria University
Cert IV Frontline Management, AIG
Engineering – Aircraft Maintenance, RMIT

Alex is a Senior Project Engineer at SCG, bringing qualifications in Project Management, Frontline Management, and Engineering. He has 18 years’ experience in the Aircraft industry including manufacturing, light and heavy maintenance, damage repairs, modifications and executive jet refurbishments, and a further 9 years’ experience with light rail, regional rail and metropolitan rail projects and maintenance programs. 

From 1999 until 2009 Alex had a successful contracting career in Europe. Having begun his career on the shop floor, he has a solid background in the practicalities of vehicle engineering.

Alex’s extensive professional experiences have contributed to a solid background in engineering, production, modification, mechanical maintenance, structural repairs, design, and a respect and passion for Safety, Quality and Customer Service.

Raymond Amos

Graduate Mechanical Engineer
Bachelor in Eng. Mech | Grad. Cert in Project Management

Raymond is a graduate from the Queensland University of Technology, with a Bachelor Degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Graduate Certificate in Project Management. With one year of experience in Building Services engineering, Raymond has experience working on medium to large scale projects throughout the planning, tendering, mechanical design and commissioning stages.

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Suzanne Stipanic

Office Manager

Suzanne’s role at SCG is that of Office Manager, providing administrative and HR support across all areas of SCG daily business. With over 10 years’ experience in freight forwarding and international transport and logistics, Suzanne brings to SCG outstanding customer service skills, an adaptive style of administration, background knowledge of the transport industry, and exceptional time management and organisational skills to SCG’s operation.  

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Navarr Van Dyk

Project Engineer

Navarr is a Project Engineer who started at SCG in 2018. With a Bachelor Degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Swinburne University of Technology and graduating with honours, Navarr has experience in the manufacturing and petrochemical industry, in maintenance and capital upgrade project s in the textile industry, as well as mechanical and design experience.

Navarr places a highlight of his career as the development and implementation of an automatic waste baler project. As part of this project, Navarr developed and implemented a new process and equipment to divert waste to an automatic baler, reducing manual labour as well as the waste bill, and increasing plant productivity. Navarr brings an eye for detail, creative problem solving and strong hands on skills to the SCG team.

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David Flynn

Design Engineering Development

An Inducted Fellow of the Design Institute of Australia, David is a versatile design leader with a deep-rooted passion for creative design engineering development and 30+ years of experience delivering superior cost savings, design rationalization and revenue maximizing solutions for the manufacturing and transport industry.


David is equally skilled in strategic coordination, project management and continuous improvement. With outstanding communication skills and keen attention to detail, David has an innate ability to forge collaborative relationships with internal and external stakeholders.

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Hassan Imdad

Project Engineer

Hassan is a Project Engineer who started at SCG in 2017, also providing expert advice to clients for light rail projects. With qualifications in Mechanical Engineering and Engineering technology, Hassan has experience working on both medium and large light rail projects. Hassan has worked on projects which present various challenges and obstacles, and through the application of hard work, dedication, critical thinking and technical knowledge, has helped these projects progress towards key milestones and deliverables.

Hassan’s critical thinking, attention to detail, project management skills, excellent communication skills and technical skills has seen him progress in a very short time to the lead engineer for one of our public transportation projects.

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Julian Allen

Project Coordinator

Julian is a Project Coordinator at SCG, working to ensure that various projects at SCG stay on track and that the goals of the project are completed above and beyond client expectations.

With his advanced qualifications in Architectural Building Design and Industrial Design, Julian has created architectural drawings for the renovation of Melbourne residences and cafes, designed a number of interior spaces, and delivered a high-level report to DEDJTR on the state of the Victorian Rail Industry.

Julian states that a highlight of his career was the delivery of design solutions to invigorate a Dutch city – developed through four months of communicate engagement – for the 2018 European Cultural Capital (Leeuwarden, Netherlands). Julian’s design – which suggested a water taxi based transport system through the city’s canals – was shortlisted by the Dutch Government and is being shown as part of the 2018 European Cultural Capital program in Leeuwarden. Julian has also designed and manufactured a machine used to recycle previously unrecyclable plastic bags into usable plastic sheeting.

To his role as Project Coordinator, Julian brings strong communication skills, a knowledge of various software and a broad design background. Julian’s strong stakeholder engagement skills support SCG to develop and maintain strong relationships and regular dialogue with its clients and industry partners to ensure that their needs are understood and met without fail.

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Lauren Coombes

Quality Manager

With a background in Social Sciences, disability services and work rehabilitation through her Occupational Therapy degree, Lauren started at SCG in 2016 to assist in the development of a plan to connect disadvantaged job-seekers to employment opportunities as part of a major infrastructure project in Melbourne. 

During her Occupational Therapy Training, Lauren gained skills in project management and was assigned to manage the systematic evaluation of a Quality Assurance Framework for a national health services provider. Lauren was later contracted to use these skills to assist in SCG’s review of its Quality Management System.

Lauren’s current role at SCG is as Quality Manager, coordinating the ongoing implementation of SCG’s Quality Management System designed to ensure that client’s needs are met and that quality objectives are achieved.

Lauren considers a highlight of her career to be working with SCG on the design of the Priority Jobseeker program.  

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Nathan Gallagher

Mechanical Engineer

Nathan is a Mechanical Engineer who started at SCG in 2017. With a double degree in Mechanical Engineering and Industrial Design, Nathan’s honours project involved designing and building a harvesting platform for small and organic farmers.

Nathan’s design and engineering skills enable him to approach a problem from a mult-disciplinary angle. Nathan is highly ambitious and self-driven with strong people skills, a positive attitude and enjoys using the skills he has learnt within engineering teams and to solve problems. He is currently supporting SCG on one of our key public transport projects.

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Renee Swadling

Project Manager

Renee started in November 2017 as Project Manager responsible for the management of one of our key public transport upgrade projects.

With qualifications in Business and Applied Science (Manufacturing Technology), Renee brings experience on heavy rail and aviation project delivery, contract management, tender preparation and analysis, and managing customer-client relationships. This includes 10 years with Qantas Airways in Commercial Management and procurement roles, and 7 years working for Downer Rail on major rollingstock projects including:

·       The Waratah Train Project (Sydney)

·       The High Capacity Metro Trains (Melbourne).

Renee places as a career highlight being part of the HCMT project tender, where intense focus, motivation, teamwork, hard work ultimately led to winning the bid.

Renee brings skills of relationship-building, organisation, project management, contract management, proposal writing and tendering to her integral role in the team.

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Julien Esteve

Senior Project Engineer

A certified SolidWorks Professional with a Master in Mechanical Engineering (Honours), specialising in Aeronautics and Space, Julien was appointed as a Project Engineer by SCG in October 2017 to work on the YarraTrams RSAW Rolling stock additional Work project.

Julien has a mechanical background, working in the testing industry and gaining experience in electrical engineering and Software development fields. From there, Julien used his skills and knowledge to move into Systems Engineering, developing testing devices. He also has experience managing Research and Development teams.

Julien places as some of the highlights of his career:

· Being head of the RTC (Real Time Certification) project: an innovative concept bringing telemetry to the field testing model.

· Developing and implementing a complete Software application in LabView environment in 4 months which included a back office application and a Human Machine Interface for the front end system (Data Acquisition Device, switches, measuring modules).

· Managing and implementing the Hardware development for the front-end instrument from circuit design concept to production (Schematics, PCB Layout using Eagle Software, Enclosure design using SolidWorks)

· Network implementation through 3G/4G VPN of a Client Server Network architecture.

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Christophe Matry

Senior Project Engineer

Christophe started at SCG in July 2017 as a Senior Project Engineer to work on the Metro Train Melbourne (MTM) Comeng Life Extension Project. With a Masters degree in Mechanical and Material Engineering and a Bachelor of Applied physics, Christophe has had various experiences in the design of complex systems and project engineering within the heavy rail, road transport and composite industries.

Christophe has extensive hands-on experience in the manufacturing and testing of composite materials, as well as the delivery of complex mechanical designs, conducting stress analysis, rapid prototyping and writing technical documentation such as functional specifications, inspection test plans, maintenance and operation manuals.

When asked about some of the most outstanding experiences in his career so far, Christophe has said that one of the most challenging and exciting times of his career was to be part of the delivery of a refurbished train maintenance facility for iron ore producers. His assignment consisted of the design, manufacturing, testing and delivery of the draft gear refurbishment cell as well as assisting the project team with the establishment of the factory layout and production of the mechanical and electrical plans.

Christophe was also involved in the delivery of the first Carbon Fibre Manufacturing Plant built in Australia by conducting a fume modelling of the facility in conjunction with the EPA, and has also worked at an Australian research institute specialised in composite manufacturing. One of the most successful projects was to produce lighter and stronger combat helmets for the Australian Defence Force. As a result, the tea m won two innovations awards at JEC Composite ASIA and at the DMTC Annual Conference.