10 Fast Facts with our new CEO Dave

September 1, 2021

From our announcement of our new CEO David O’Rourke at the start of July, Dave has taken the reins of aXcelerate with much enthusiasm and energy. We’ve asked him some hard-hitting questions so you can get to know him better. 

Heartbeat: How has your first three months been at aXcelerate?

Dave: I feel like Charlie in the Chocolate Factory, getting shown around by the amazing Reay and Jules as they unveil to me all the incredible things they have achieved before handing me the keys to the factory. Such an amazing, talented and passionate team delivering a service that our customers love and that genuinely improves the learning outcomes for millions of Australians.  

HB: What are you most excited about for the rest of 2021 at aXcelerate? 

D: Seeing Australia come out the other side of lockdowns and returning to business stronger than before, with a renewed thirst for learning powered by aXcelerate. Closer to home - I am excited about getting to know more about our customers, the challenges we solve and the people in our business that make it possible. Or put simply, finding out how we make a difference and amplifying that effect far and wide.

HB: Who would you want to play you in a movie of your life?

D: Jimmy Rees. The perfect fusion of Aussie/Humour/Family. He somehow makes COVID a bit more bearable so maybe, just maybe, he could make a movie about me fun.

HB: How many languages do you speak?

D: Two – English and Swedish

HB: What’s your go-to coffee order? 

D: Before 5pm – Soy Flat White. After 5pm – Espresso Martini

HB: Where in the world is your favourite place you’ve visited? 

D: It's a tie between three places, all in Italy - Cinque Terre, Lake Como and Val Gardena

HB: What is one thing a client has said to you that made you smile?

D:  To be honest, it’s a theme shared by many clients I have met or calls I have watched more than a single statement. And that theme is the genuine surprise and delight that they simply can’t hide when they realise how much easier their life will be working with aXcelerate than what they are doing right now. The power of building a system for trainers by trainers. Just makes me smile to know that our promise of a one system solution, supported by staff who genuinely care about the customer’s success is actually being realised and felt by our customers and theirs.

HB: What’s your go-to karaoke song?

D: U2 – Where the Streets Have No Name

HB: Who is the most famous person you’ve met?

D: Well there are two, but the first one I didn’t recognise till after he left – that would be Orlando Bloom in an airport lounge in LA. The second, Val Kilmer (Iceman) who was fascinated by my then 18 month old son, and took 5 minutes playing with him.

HB: Where do you see the future of education and training going?

D: I see Higher Education morphing more towards the VET model, blending real world skills with textbook knowledge and more and more micro credentials. And I see life based learning becoming the norm for all adults. And hopefully, aXcelerate growing to support it all here and afar.


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