Debbie de fiddes


Founder & CEO


For more than twenty five years, Debbie de Fiddes has been the CEO of de Fiddes Design and has extensive experience in design for aged care, dementia and retirement living. She is a dementia design specialist, consultant, researcher, educator and training specialist who is involved in projects locally, nationally and internationally. 

Debbie is passionate about creating beautiful environments incorporating supportive spaces that work well for residents, staff and visitors through evidence based design. She has extensive knowledge and understanding of the specific needs of our seniors including mobility, dementia, visual and hearing impairments – just some of the factors which need to be taken into consideration when designing in this specialised area.

Debbie is the author of “Universal by Design”, published in 2012, established Design Guidelines for Dementia and Aged Care for the NSW Health Department and has written numerous articles for magazines and papers such as the Australian Journal of Dementia Care, Australian Ageing Agenda, leading Age Services Australia’s Fusion Magazine and online publication, Inside Ageing.

As a regular speaker at conferences both nationally and internationally, Debbie presented at the Aged & Community Services WA’s 2017 State Conference during March 2017, the Environments for Ageing Conference, held in Las Vegas during February 2017 and the Social Impact Festival at the University of Western Australia in July 2017. Most recently she has presented at the Alzheimer's Australia WA Symposium at the Perth Convention Centre in October 2017.

Debbie is a national workshop presenter for events such as ‘Designing Dementia Friendly Healthcare Facilities’ with Professor Richard Fleming and Kirsty Bennett on behalf of DTSC, University of Wollongong.

In 2014 Debbie was approached by Alzheimer’s Australia to design and build an apartment suitable for someone living with dementia. ‘A Home for Life’ was created and was showcased at the International Alzheimer’s Conference held in Perth in April 2015.  The design was so successful that it has now been incorporated onto the Dementia Enabling Environments website

Extensive travel allows Debbie to broaden her knowledge and to keep up to date with current and future trends in aged care and retirement living. Her latest trip overseas established many connections, which included Stirling University in Scotland who are currently conducting further research on moving memories and air quality. 

To ensure the de Fiddes Design team are kept up to date Debbie conducts monthly in house staff training sessions on the latest information regarding innovative design for dementia, together with the latest research and technology to ensure that her team is at the forefront of new ideas. 

Dedication to improving the lives of people as they age is paramount to Debbie’s success, along with fostering a team of talented, creative professionals who complement each other’s skills and work proficiently together in creating beautiful, safe environments for clients, residents and their visitors.