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40 Under 40

Building careers through determination

40 Under 40

The first of our 40 Under 40 alumni for 2022 work in completely different industries but share a common drive to build lasting legacies.

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Adam Frith

Mine Tech Engineering & Construction / General Manger

After working as a plumber and gasfitter, Adam Frith moved into civil and pipeline construction before joining Mine Tech Engineering as employee number 13.

He quickly rose to become senior project manager and is today general manager of the fabrication and construction firm.

Since the 38-year-old joined the company it has grown to employ 230 staff, acquired two other businesses and expanded into NSW and Victoria.

“Mine Tech Engineering started with an empty shed in 2014, some basic welding equipment, two boilermakers, a single vehicle and an unceasing desire to grow the business into something remarkable,” he says.

Today it is based at Edinburgh and has facilities at Roxby Downs and “the capacity to deploy its teams and equipment almost anywhere in Australia”.

Adam and the company are excited about post-COVID opportunities.

“I love the business I am with, I love helping others succeed in their careers, and I love delivering for a client,” he says.

“My job is to make others’ lives easier and help them be the best they can be. I want people to want to work with us – there is no point coming to work if you do not want to be here.”

Best advice you’ve ever given? Never assume someone understands your thought process, be mindful of perception and trust that most people have the right intentions.


Adam Gerard Maney

Cabana Productions / CEO

Adam Gerard Maney, 38, started Cabana Productions from his southern suburbs home about five years ago and has partnered with several South Australian organisations, including Foodbank SA and Reconciliation SA.

Now Cabana’s CEO, Adam was commissioned by National Indigenous Television (NITV) to produce a documentary on one of Australia’s most significant Indigenous buildings, which aired in 2022.

Throughout 2021 and 2022, Cabana Productions has been working on a feature-length documentary for Reconciliation SA and the Department of Child Protection, exploring the impact of Indigenous child placement on children and communities, and how the system can be improved for the future. Adam is directing and producing these projects.

This year, Adam has also taken on his first apprentice as part of a team from various cultural, gender and disability backgrounds, which aims to break the stigma around disabled artists.

A meal or food item that changed your life? My Mum’s spaghetti marinara – still my comfort food to this day.


Alicia Byrne

University of South Australia / Research Associate

Alicia Byrne investigates the genetic causes underlying stillbirth and newborn death, which affect around 3,000 Australian families each year.

However, for the majority of cases, the underlying cause can’t be determined.

Alicia’s work uses a novel ‘genomic autopsy’ approach, examining the DNA of impacted families in order to establish a precise diagnosis.

She says 50 per cent of previously undiagnosed families now have an accurate cause of death established, facilitating reproductive planning and leading to the birth of 12 healthy babies.

Best piece of advice you’ve been given? ‘Choose the option that gives you the most options’. No matter how big or small the decision, from career moves to where to eat dinner, this advice always holds true.

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