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The Team

The Rookies Team

andrew mcdonald - The Rookies

Andrew McDonald


Andrew is a CG Supervisor at Industrial Light & Magic and co-founder of The Rookies. He has a background in industrial design, animatronics and web development. The majority of his professional career has been spent working in the visual effects industry at studios such as MPC, Animal Logic and Ambience Entertainment.

Andrew’s film credits include Happy Feet, Harry Potter 5 and 6, Watchmen, The LEGO Movie, Suckerpunch, 10000 BC, The Chronicles of Narnia, Sweeney Todd, Fred Claus, Australia, Knowing, Legend of the Guardians and Walking with Dinosaurs 3D.

Alwyn Hunt


Alwyn has a background in fine arts and has been in the industry for over ten years. He has worked at a number of studios around the world including Sony Imageworks, The Moving Picture Company, Double Negative, Animal Logic, and Weta Digital.

His main film credits include Harry Potter, The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, Watchmen, The Wolfman, Alice in Wonderland, John Carter, Superman: Man of Steel, Ironman 3 and has just finished working on The Hobbit 1 and The Hobbit 2.

Justin Mohlman

Creative Director

Justin has over 15 years of experience in the video gaming world, contributing to 20 plus titles at studios throughout the Midwest. You can find his work in legacy franchises, such as Tony Hawk, Kingdom Hearts and Mortal Kombat as well as other AAA titles like Singularity and Stranglehold. Justin is currently the creative director at The Rookies, the industry standard for animation, visual effects and the gaming industries. In addition to gaming, Justin has over 10 years of experience as an adjunct instructor at institutions across the Chicagoland area. He is currently teaching at Columbia College Chicago, Tribeca and Pixl Visn Media Academy where he focuses on game design and art development.

Outside of games and education, you can find Justin assisting brands like Threadless, Heavy Metal Magazine and Dark Matter Coffee with product development and marketing. Finally, he is the manager and part-owner of Code of Conduct, a tattoo shop and creative work-space in Chicago’s South Loop neighborhood.

Advisory Board Members

We are strong believers in the saying “you are only as good as the people you surround yourself with.” This is why we are proud to have the following people guiding us on this journey. They are all leaders in their respective fields and together have a wealth of knowledge that is required to make sure The Rookies is not only successful, but delivers on it’s goals and mission.

George Hedon

Founder of Pause Fest

George is the founder and creative director of Australia’s premier creative tech festival Pause Fest. His expertise in design, advertising, festival and events lead him to create award-winning campaigns for Heineken, Target, Sony PS and Puma.

Laura Palma

Director – EF Education First

Laura helps students and teachers use Education First educational tours and events as a way to bring what they’re learning inside the classroom to life. Her company was built on experiential learning, cultural immersion and authentic connections.

Ben Gunsberger

Chief Operations Officer – Babyology

Ben is co-founder and COO of Babyology, Australia’s leading parenting site. Babyology covers premium products for children and their parents and is the largest community of Australian parents on social media.

André Luis

Founder – Trojan Horse was a Unicorn

Several years ago he co-founded the first school in Portugal catering for the CG industry. He now runs Trojan Horse was a Unicorn which is like Burning Man meets TED – a global gathering of the world’s new generation of digital creators.

Lucy Faro

Director of Professional Services – White Spring

Lucy specialises in sales training enablement and solutions from a sales technology and business performance perspective. Her focus is sales technology initiatives as well as training and learning initiatives across multiple technology platforms.

Anna Hildebrandt

Owner – Crispy Productions

Anna has 15 years experience working in screened digital entertainment specializing mainly in animation and visual effects. She is a Member of Screen Producers Australia and the Visual Effects Society for which she was a Board member of the Australian section from 2010-2014.

David Loughnan

Head of Digital – Traffik

David has over 16 years digital experience working across Sydney and London. He is ultimately responsible for the delivery of the company’s digital output including strategy, creative and execution. David is extremely passionate about the evolution of digital and emerging technologies, with a specific interest in creating experiences that fuse live and digital channels.

David Sharp

Group Marketing Manager – Grays Online

David has over 21 years of experience in the Australian data-driven marketing, credit and property division science industries. David joined Grays in 2010 as Group Marketing Manager and has also been responsible for retail business.