Sydney’s Best Podiatry Crew

Our Magnificent Team

While other teams take themselves very seriously, we just take your problems and treatment seriously!

The team at A Step Ahead are NOT the biggest team in Western Sydney podiatry; they aren’t even the biggest team in Penrith Podiatry! We don’t have chandeliers in our waiting area, and we don’t produce uber-cool TikTok dance pieces.

We are though dedicated, passionate, professional and caring! We are known for being good with kids, making them feel comfortable, heard and the experience fun! Our patients continuously rate super highly regarding satisfaction, and we don’t even have to pay them to do that! Our team will really listen, and we won’t rush you during your consult. We believe medicine isn’t about conditions; it’s about people!

So with all that in mind, the professional caring but not taking ourselves too seriously, here are our team profile! You’ll see that what we’ve said is reflected in those profiles, which you’ll find tend to be a tad tongue in cheek!

Thanks for checking us out, and we hope to get you back to “Happy, Healthy and active” soon!



Dr Brenden Brown, Podiatrist

(AKA BB or Doctor Foot)

Dr Brenden Brown, your awesome Podiatrist

BB With one of his patients he is the one NOT in the yellow skirt!

Area of interest:

  • Sports podiatry
  • Musculoskeletal medicine injury
  • Heel pain
  • Occupational/workplace injury Workers Compensation
  • Kids/Paediatric lower limb care
  • Ingrown Nail surgery


You could describe Brenden, the founder of A Step Ahead, as engaging, encouraging, enlivening energetic, enthusiastic, vigorous, vital and vivacious and still fall 37 adjectives shy of perfectly describing his passion for work and for life. To say he’s your typical podiatrist is like saying Uluru is just another rock.

How it all began

He began A Step Ahead with the goal of assembling a staff of passionate people with an unquenchable thirst for life. He didn’t just want a team of podiatrists content with the status quo. Instead he wanted a team of podiatrists who dared to think big; who believed that good was the enemy of great; who understood that the harder you work, the wider the window; and who shared his boldness in thinking that they, as a staff, could better the lives of their patients.

To make this goal a reality, he went about organizing a crew. Believing that brilliance feeds brilliance, he, as a rule, only hired people smarter than himself. For as Brenden says, “If I’m the highest denominator, we’re all in trouble.”

And now, after more than 20 years as the face of A Step Ahead (or as he calls himself, “the guy who wears the fez”), his quest for bettering the lives of others has not wavered. Nor has it gone unnoticed. He has appeared on the Today ShowWhat’s Good for YouMornings with Kerri Anne and Current Affair, and has been featured in Men’s HealthCosmopolitan Magazine, the Sydney Morning HeraldNew IdeaThe AustralianThe Daily Telegraph and even the “all-knowing” Dolly Magazine, which described him as an “expert.”

Yet, despite these accolades, the endorsement he prides most came from a potential job candidate who turned down an offer with A Step Ahead under the reasoning, “They are not normal podiatrists. They make their staff work really hard.”

When away from the office, he relishes exploring all of life’s magical possibilities with his wife and daughters.

What patient or patients do you remember most?

One was an older man who could no longer walk his grand kids to school due to severe pain. Soon after we treated him and rectified his pain, he took up bush-walking with his grand kids. And the other patient I remember most was a young man who weighed 160 kilograms. He could not walk past his front gate without pain. So we fitted him with orthoses /insoles, giving him the ability to walk without pain. He then walked so much he returned one year later 45 kilos lighter and in need of new insoles to replace the original pair he wore out.

If you could meet anyone, who would it be?

Wow…Truly no one…Isn’t that crazy? I suppose the question should be framed, “Who do I admire?”…I have long admired Nelson Mandela. I admire former Prime Minister, Gough Whitlam. I admire any person, who despite popular opinion, has looked towards creating change for the greater good.

Do you have any unknown skills, facts or interests?

When I was young I was taken out of school by the Education Department and placed in what I call a “Hippy Camp.” I was selected as a potential “future leader of Australia” and was taught all sorts of crazy leadership and team building skills. I also had a microchip implanted in the back of my neck, which, I’m told, will be remotely activated when the time is right for me to lead the country. You can decide which bit is true.

What’s your biggest flaw?

Music. I would love to be able to read music, but I’m terrible at it. Also, I’m horrific at skipping.

Who would you be if you could live someone else’s life?

No one. I like the life I have. I love building my own life.

Proudest moment?

I have two:

My little girl’s scripture teacher asked her class, “Who would like to go to heaven?” All the kids in the class raised their hands except my daughter. When the teacher asked her, “Don’t you want to go to heaven?” she replied, “No. I like staying with my mum and dad if that’s okay?”

My little girl was moving from one school to another. The principal from the school she was leaving told my wife, “We will miss her. She is a great little girl, she is school captain material.” My wife cried, and then so did I.


Dr Alexis Furtado, Podiatrist

Area of interest;

  • Sports podiatry
  • Musculoskeletal Injury rehab
  • Kids/Paediatric lower limb care
  • Ingrown Nail surgery
  • Strength and conditioning
  • Disability management and care


Additional professional qualifications / certification

  • Bachelor of Science (Maj in biology)


Publications / Lecture / Presentations

2021 Workshop Presenter GPCE General Practice conference Workshop Presenter

To describe Alexis as merely a sports fanatic is an understatement. When asked his preference of TV channel, between movie or sport, he answered, “Sports channel, unless they’re showing a rerun of the 2010 soccer World Cup on HBO.” And often, in between patients, he mimics cricket batting strokes while, we’re guessing, picturing himself hitting a ball outside the waiting room for six. This same obsession Alexis has for soccer and cricket he has for his patients. His engaging demeanour, quick laugh, and keen ability to listen – a massively underrated trait – allow him to immediately bond with any patient regardless of age, background, or whether or not they know Spain defeated the Netherlands in the 2010 World Cup.

Alexis also possesses the gift of voice. He sings for his local church and often can be heard quietly harmonizing with the clinic’s sound system, which, for the sake of everyone, especially patients, prompts us to remind him that office policy mandates all singing must be at full volume. Which, come to think of it, is how Alexis, to his credit, pursues life.

Away from work he enjoys spending time with friends and family and, if the setting is right, strumming the guitar before a bonfire over the scent of burnt marshmallows. And while he proudly calls Oz home, he hopes, once COVID restrictions are lifted, to return to India to marry his childhood sweetheart in a traditional ceremony. And based on what we know of Alex, she is one lucky lady, provided, of course, she does not mind watching HBO reruns of the 2010 World Cup.

If you could meet anyone, who would it be?
Cricket superstar, MS Dhoni, for the purpose of learning a lesson or two on how to maintain composure, or at least look like you’re composed in an extremely challenging situation.

List two words to describe yourself:
Jovial and diligent.

What attracted you to A Step Ahead?
The close-knit team environment, the different facilities available for clients in terms of rehab and the in-house orthotic lab! The systematic approach in addressing the different aspects of a presenting complaint and how these treatment modalities were tailored to every client’s needs and requirements.

What is your favourite ice cream flavour?
Chocolate chip.

What is your proudest moment?
Seeing my name on the A Step Ahead business card.


Dr Jason Nguyen, Podiatrist

Area of interest;

  • Sports podiatry
  • Musculoskeletal medicine injury
  • Heel pain
  • Strength and conditioning
  • Ingrown Nail surgery

Additional professional qualifications / certification

  • Shockwave Therapy
  • Advanced Injection therapy for podiatric practitioners

Professional Memberships / Associations

  • Sports Medicine Australia

Jason may possibly be our first-ever hire who if given the choice between playing a pick-up soccer game or saving the planet from imminent annihilation would not ask for time to think about it. His competitive fix comes from playing basketball and oztag (non-contact rugby or what we call no-cauliflower-ear rugby) and pushing his limits in the gym powerlifting. Jason, or Jase as he’s known at the office, has the esteemed distinction of being our only staff member who, if asked, can flip, twist and kick while upside down in mid-air (imagine a Cirque du Soleil performer in a lab coat). But his most endearing skill comes from an unwavering belief in the audacity of possibility. Refusing to settle, Jason likes to think big.  Not just big, but really, really big, as evidenced by his admiration for Elon’s Musk’s quest to fly to Mars. If Jason wasn’t helping others as a podiatrist his dream job would to be on stage, singing professionally. But don’t expect to see him at the Sydney Opera House anytime soon. He claims his voice doesn’t carry well outside of the shower. And last we checked there are no shower facilities on the Sydney Opera House’s stage. Which, at the risk of sounding selfish, is great news for us and our patients.

Why should people visit you at A Step Ahead?

Because I genuinely care about my patients and achieving a positive outcome for them. I am willing to continue to learn and improve my skills as a podiatrist to provide the absolute best care I can for every patient.

What are you terrible at?

Spelling. Thank god for modern technology and auto-correct.

If you could live anyone elses life whose would it be and why?

It would have to be Ed Sheeran, so I can live my dream of being a famous singer.

Share a story about a particular patient that had an interesting turnaround or improvement under your care.

A nursing home hairdresser had severe pain on the sole of her foot that showed no improvement after recommended exercise and an orthotic footwear prescription. Upon closer inspection, I discovered hundreds of thousands of almost invisible grey hair splinters in her foot! After debriding the surface of her sole she received almost instant relief.

What’s your proudest moment?

My parents both left their countries at a young age to escape war and to provide me and my siblings better opportunities in life. My getting into university, completing it with distinction, and now working as a podiatrist serves to them as proud justification for their efforts.


Shendi Brown

Past Practice manager
ASA Team trainer
Shen is no longer working in the business day to day but she is always watching!

Project management
Change Management
Podiatry Assistant
Diploma of Massage Therapy
Hairdresser (no really she was)

Shendi in glasses

Shendi, yes she's the one without the beard!

Shendi has more titles than Among them include: podiatry assistant, massage therapist, longest-tenured staff member, office foot lollie distributor, Brenden Brown’s wife (yes, the same Brenden Brown from the bio above, who founded A Step Ahead), Brenden Brown’s go-to girl, and Brenden Brown’s dream instigator. Her expertise in foot care allows her to travel with her husband, attending to the needs of the elderly in aged care facilities and examining the feet of refinery workers in Brewarrina and Bourke.

And we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention her title of chocaholic. Shen craves chocolate like koala bears crave eucalyptus leaves. There are some on our staff who suspect Shen is Willy Wonka’s secret love child. But her tastes aren’t limited to chocolate. She also has a fondness for French wine. If not at A Step Ahead, she could see herself working as a cross between Willy Wonka and a French sommelier. But unless France and Switzerland merge and begin producing Château Lafite-Rothschild-filled bontons, we’re confident Shen won’t be leaving us any time soon.

When not attending feet or pursuing chocolate, Shen enjoys cooking, skiing, scuba diving, exercising, and shopping for clothes.


Dr Asima Kamali, Podiatrist

Dr Asima KamaliAsima, as a child, dreamed of a career in interior design. But we could not be happier that she chose to interior decorate shoes with healthy feet rather than interior decorate homes with brassy light switch plates. It’s a sentiment echoed by her patients. Especially first-time visitors whom she immediately puts at ease with her upbeat attitude and unwavering commitment to upgrading the quality of their lives with attentive care.

Helping others is a life theme for Asima. Her high moral code is reflected in her mentors. When asked what one famous person she would like most to meet, she listed Baba Mazari, a political leader from her homeland in Afghanistan, who lost his life fighting for the basic human rights of others.  Just as two-plus-two equals four (Or, in Asima’s case, equals five. Math, she readily admits, is not her strength.), she, of no surprise, when away from work, prioritises devoting time to her family.

She also enjoys spending time outdoors, walking and hiking, giving her room to refresh her brain and, as a self-described life-long learner, give thought to expanding her expertise as a healthcare professional and, maybe even, (and we’re conjecturing here) how best to approach Brenden about upgrading A Step Ahead’s reception area with a different colour scheme, some well-placed office accessories and assuring all wall hangings are at eye level.

What is your favourite ice cream flavour?

Mango/chocolate chip.

What two words best describe yourself?

Diligent and organised.

If you could live anyone else’s life, who would it be?

I think life is already short. I, if allowed, would live my life again. I would know, second-time through, to not stress over the little things and spend more time with people who matter most to me, making sure to let them know how loved and important they are to me.

Sport or Movie Channel?

I mostly enjoy watching football. Otherwise, Movie Channel.

Proudest moment?

I am blessed for making my family proud, as I am the first person from my family to complete university to become a podiatrist. I know how proud and supportive my family has been and continue to strive to give back for all the opportunities for a better life, since moving to Australia, had been provided. I am also very proud to have chosen A Step Ahead as my first official job out of university!


Dr Woong Jang, Podiatrist

Dr Woong, Podiatrist Woong is our clinic’s version of “Ted Lasso”, minus, of course, the daily delivery of homemade biscuits. But what he does deliver daily is unflagging decency. He is a walking monument to Ted Lasso’s belief that “doing the right thing is never the wrong thing.” It’s a characteristic that pilots his every action towards everyone he encounters.

This bears especially true at work, where he, with his wonderful dry wit and permanent smile, enjoys joking with his patients, putting them at ease while tending to their ankle and foot concerns with skilled attention. Away from work, he is the proud and indulgent father of two infants, who, as Woong humorously shares, carry no respect for sleep. Forever humble, he is also the unassuming owner of a blackbelt in taekwondo.

Woong also loves soccer. So much so he, if given the opportunity to live someone else’s life, would choose former English soccer star David Beckham (or, for you non-soccer fans, the husband of Posh Spice from the Spice Girls). But based on the reactions of his growing allegiance of patients, especially the parents of kids with soccer-glory aspirations, they’re glad Woong is Woong, tending to their foot and ankle needs with Ted Lasso-like integrity.

What is your favourite ice cream flavour?


If you could be anything else other than a podiatrist what would it be?

A painter.

Share news of a patient that you remember most:

A patient with a foot ulcer was non-compliant with recommendations, causing her foot to get worse. When she failed to return for follow-up appointments, I called her, showing how much I cared and trying to persuade her to return to the clinic for additional care. Eventually, she returned, adhering to a regular check-up schedule, and with it, her condition improved. The experience taught me the importance of empathy, showing I care, and the impact it has on patients.

Sport or Movie Channel?

Love soccer.

Proudest moment?

The birth of my son.



AshleighAshleigh, who is better known around the office as Ash, is all about running. She runs our office. She runs competitively. And she runs away from dance floors. Even if she were to achieve the legendary status of her idol, professional endurance athlete Samantha Gash, chances of her appearing on “Dancing With the Stars” are about as likely as Vatican City sponsoring a motocross race in Saint Peter’s Square.

Simply put, Ash does not list dancing as a strength. She, as rumour has it, even as a child at play, never bought into believing that the Hokey Pokey dance is “what it’s all about.” To her, sport, in general, is what it’s all about. Netball and oztag are favorites. But running towers as her true passion. She recently participated in Ultra-Trail Australia (UTA), one of the top trail running events on the planet, running 50 kilometres (comparable to running non-stop, from Sydney to the outskirts of Penrith) in Blue Mountains National Park.

But the true indication of her dedication to the sport of running is that in the long history of A Step Ahead she is the only employee to precisely answer, in the staff questionnaire, “How long does it take you to run 1 kilometre?” (At or around four minutes and 30 seconds, in case you’re wondering.) Come to think of it, she’s also the only employee we’ve ever had in administration to be a qualified registered nurse. Her understanding of medical terminology is a massive plus with patients when calling or checking in. All the more reason we hope Ash has a long run with us.

What is your favourite ice cream flavour?

It’s not classified as ice cream but lemon sorbet.

What two words best describe yourself?

Sporty and outgoing.

What made you decide to join A Step Ahead?

I actually quit my job as a registered nurse due to the stressful environment and the effect it was having on my mental health. I knew I needed a change, and when I saw the ad for this job, and the manner in which it was advertised, I knew A Step Ahead would be a place where I would like to work.

Sport or Movie Channel?

Love soccer.

If you could live anyone else’s life, who would it be and why?

Samantha Gash. She lives her life through running and sees the world through running.



JohannaJohanna is our office’s version of a Today Show morning host. She’s forever upbeat, eager to chat and quick with a laugh. Her sparkle never fades, making us suspect she’s on a permanent sugar buzz from all of her baking. She loves baking cookies and cakes with artistic flair. So much so, as rumour has it, according to her kids, it’s like having a Bourke Street Bakery for a mum. Of no surprise to us, Jo says she often fancies a career as a food blogger, putting her kitchen acumen into words and getting paid to eat. Who knows?

Maybe she can start travelling the world like her hero, David Attenborough, but instead of educating us on the bathing habits of South American howler monkeys, she can enlighten us on what it’s like to eat freshly baked brioche from a Paris bakery. But then again, maybe not. Travelling would remove her from her kids, who she absolutely adores. And from baking that she absolutely adores. And from A Step Ahead that she absolutely adores. Well, actually, we can’t be certain she adores working. We should confirm this with her first because the last thing we want is for Jo, out of all people, to think we’re half-baked.

If you could meet anyone famous, who would it be?


What two words best describe yourself?

Positive and helpful.

What are you terrible at?

Anything that involves hand-eye coordination and running.

What do you enjoy most about working at A Step Ahead?

It’s very interesting. Everyone who works there goes out of their way to help each other and have a joke and a chat in between busy times.

Proudest moment?

There is not one moment but a lifetime of so many moments that makes me proud.