Veteran Entrepreneur of the Year


Garth Chester spent 13 years serving in the ADF as an aircraft technician in both the Army and Navy. Following his separation, he actively sought to solidify his service knowledge into usable civilian certifications before taking a role in the mining industry.

Through his time in the mining industry, Garth found many areas for improvement and optimisation. Unable to action these ideas in his role, Garth took the risk to start his own company, Valenhold.

Using his ADF mindset of precision and getting things right the first time – for both small details and large systems – Valenhold has grown its revenue and expanded exponentially, now operating in 14 countries.

Not only has Valenhold grown its revenue, it has tripled its workforce in the last 12 months with 23 individuals employed including 4 veterans.

From his own experiences in the ADF, Garth recognises the strengths that veterans can bring to the table in terms of work ethic, transferable skill sets, and teamwork. His work has benefited from the mission focus ethos he experienced in the ADF, along with experience working in high pressure scenarios.

As Valenhold expands, Garth has reinvested in his people, implementing a company-wide Mental Health Recharge Period, providing an onsite gym, access to study support and flexible working arrangements.

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