Brenda Debesten has lived an outstanding life! Brenda is a chemical engineer with over 15 years of experience in the mining and manufacturing industry. She also coaches women who are struggling to get ahead in male-dominated STEM industries to reach their full potential. Brenda grew up In Zimbabwe in a small mining town. Her father was a doctor and her mother was an entrepreneur who ran multiple businesses. She’s a trailblazer and a go-getter. Brenda attended boarding school from the young age of eight and by the time she turned 18, she was inspired to become a chemical engineer. She applied to study university in Australia and the rest is history. Her first job was working in a gold mine in Newcastle where she was the only black female engineer. She then went on to work for the Australian Federal Government at a nuclear facility in Sydney. Currently, Brenda is working for her previous employer manufacturing ammonium nitrate and making bombs for the construction industry and she’s based in Melbourne. New to the coaching industry, her passion lies in self-development.
She initially did some coaching with a woman named Janine Jackson who helped her dive deep and discover her passions. Brenda is now coaching other women in the mining and manufacturing industry who are yet to develop their own full potential. She’s also speaking at University and coaching female students who are still at the front end of their own journey as only 12% of engineers in Australia are female right now. Brenda also runs a Youtube series called, “Chronicles of a female engineer” and she does a weekly episode on how to build visibility in your workplace and becoming proactive about self-promotion. Brenda has been helped along the way by Jennifer McKenzie, her general manager and Janne Jackson, her coach. A huge quirky fact about Brenda is that she once spent six weeks in a maximum-security female prison for a crime she did not commit. The biggest lesson in her life has been, “Your past doesn’t determine your future!”
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