Fellowship ​

The Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences elects the best and brightest minds in the field of medical and health sciences as Fellows.

Fellows are elected in recognition of their outstanding achievements and exceptional contributions to the sector. The Fellowship are acknowledged for their clinical, non-clinical, leadership, industry and research contributions.

Find Fellows of the AAHMS

To find Fellows of our Academy either use the search form below or download the full list of current Fellows here.






Chair of Medicine and Head, The Central Clinical School, Monash University; Program Director, Alfred Brain; Deputy Director of Research, Alfred Health
Monash University, The Alfred Centre

Professor O’Brien is a medical specialist in neurology and clinical pharmacology, with particular expertise in epilepsy and related brain disorders, anti‐epileptic drugs and imaging in animal models and humans.  His research covers both basic and clinical studies related to epilepsy, its neuropsychiatric co‐morbidities and other neurodegenerative brain diseases. He has published more than 290 peer‐reviewed papers, which have been highly cited and influenced clinical practice.  His work has had two primary goals:  First to better understand the determinants of treatment response in epilepsy, identify markers for treatment outcomes, and develop new treatment approaches, and second to investigate the fundamental neurobiological basis, and inter-relationship, of the neuropsychiatric co‐morbidities present in many patients with epilepsy.

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
The University of New South Wales

Professor Harris is a clinician and leading scientist in the field of surgery. He has strived for the advancement of science in the practice of medicine through professional involvement with peers via the Australian Orthopaedic Association (AOA) and Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS), public education, original research (over 120 papers and over $4 million in grant funding since 2012), improving the quality of surgical research, initiating, expanding and advancing clinical quality registries, and through active engagement with national, state and local health administrations. He is a consistent advocate for quality and clinical relevance in medical science.

Professor and Head, Department of Anatomical Pathology
Alfred Health

Professor McLean directs Anatomical Pathology and the State Neuromuscular Service, Alfred Health.  With expertise in pathology and neuropathology, she has published 300+ research papers in the fields of: dementia and cancer.  As inaugural director of the NHMRC Australian Brain Bank Network she has enabled accurate provision of pathologically characterized tissues to national and international researchers supporting 600+ papers.  She has innovated and implemented an on-line pathology medical curriculum and initiated and developed the post-fellowship neuropathology national curriculum.  She has international, national, state and university awards for: education, research supervision, research and for her contribution to the field of Pathology.

Head, Blood Cells and Blood Cancer Division
Walter & Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research

Cell Death is necessary for the normal development and functioning of multi‐cellular animals. Apoptosis is a process of programmed cell suicide, which removes cells that are no longer needed or have become dangerous. Professor Strasser showed that defects in apoptosis cause cancer and autoimmune disease and render tumour cells resistant to anti-cancer therapeutics. He identified many of the critical regulators of apoptosis. His discovery of the BH3-only proteins and their essential role in the initiation of apoptosis, including that triggered by many anti-cancer drugs, forms the basis of the so-called BH3 mimetic drugs. This Includes ABT‐199, Which is currently in phase 3 clinical trials, was recently awarded breakthrough therapy designation by the FDA and is expected to benefit many cancer patients.

James Stewart Chair of Surgery
The Royal Melbourne Hospital

Christobel Saunders is a surgeon and cancer researcher, recognised as a leader in both surgical practice and research in Australia and internationally. This is demonstrated through her portfolio of research publications (over 150), successful grants (over $25m), translation of research into practice (such as guideline development and obtaining government funding for new treatments) and executive membership of a large number of professional, governmental and policy groups (e.g. College of Surgeons, Cancer Australia, State government). Moreover, her passion for improving patient outcomes means she is heavily involved with health advocacy via Cancer Councils and Breast Cancer Network Australia.

Beat Cancer Professorial Chair, College of Medicine and Public Health
Flinders University

Professor McKinnon is a global leader in pharmacy and pharmaceutical science with broad contributions spanning the breadth of pharmaceutical research, policy and education.  Attracting over $24 million, his research has produced 130 original papers, 12 patents and two spin-off companies. He was Foundation Director of the Sansom Institute (UniSA) and Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer. In 2010, he provided the vision for the translational catalyst, Therapeutic Innovation Australia. Eminent international roles include Vice-President of the International Pharmaceutical Federation and Chair, 5th Pharmaceutical Sciences World Congress. He is a long-term Director of the Australian Institute of Policy and Science.

Executive Dean, Health and Medical Sciences Faculty Office
The University of Adelaide

Benjamin Kile is Joint Head of the ACRF Chemical Biology Division at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, an NHMRC Principal Research Fellow, and a Professor at the University of Melbourne. A world leader in platelet biology, Ben is also known for his seminal discoveries in hematopoiesis, oncogene function, cell death and inflammatory disease. He contributes to the NHMRC as a member of Project Grant, ECF and CDF panels and reviews Project Grants, Development Grants, and Research Fellowships. Ben sits on the boards of several national committees and research networks, contributing to shaping health and medical sciences in Australia.

George Richard Marks Professor of Pathology / Senior Specialist Forensic Pathologist
The University of Adelaide / Forensic Science SA

Professor Roger Byard has conducted much original research into many aspects of forensic pathology, focussing particularly on accidental and sudden death. He has been very active on community and government committees developing recommendations and proposing policy changes to deal with tragic cases of sudden unexpected death, and in media campaigns and public lectures. He has also initiated an approach to forensic pathology practice called ‘preventive pathology’ that focuses on public health outcomes and facilitates dissemination of this information to professional colleagues and the community. He has a major interest in developing the field of paediatric forensic pathology nationally and internationally.

Professor & Head, Sexual Health Program, Kirby Institute
University of New South Wales

Professor Donovan is the pioneer of sexual health research in Australia, being appointed to the country’s first ever academic post in the discipline. He made key discoveries in HIV, such as the primary HIV illness and its characteristics, and was among the first to document the effects of concurrent HIV infection on hepatitis B virus infection.  Professor Donovan’s very high standing is evidenced by his Presidency of the International Society for Sexually Transmitted Disease Research – the pre‐eminent scientific body in the field – as well as his extensive international conference invitations. He would be a most influential addition to the Fellowship.

Interim Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences
University of Melbourne

Professor Jane Gunn is a distinguished academic general practitioner whose leadership has raised the profile and rigour of primary care research in Australia.  As the inaugural Chair of Primary Care Research at The University of Melbourne her work in mental health addresses a leading cause of disability burden.  She has established a unique cohort study to document the patient experience and outcomes of depression in primary care, and forged many successful international research collaborations.  Her research influences policy and practice via advisory roles to the WHO Mental Health Gap Action Programme, the Australian Government’s Science Priorities and Mental Health Expert Reference Groups.

About Fellowship with AAHMS

Our Fellows sit at the heart of everything we do. They represent Australia’s leading minds in health and medical sciences, having been recognised for their clinical, non-clinical, leadership, industry and research contributions.

To be considered for election to the Academy’s Fellowship, a candidate must show exceptional professional achievement in a field related to health and/or medicine.

Fellows contribute to the projects and activities of the Academy and must be willing to be active participants.

Successful Fellowship candidates will have shown:

  • Outstanding leadership in their field.
  • Significant and ongoing involvement with issues of health care, prevention of disease, education, research, and health services policy and delivery.

Candidates for Fellowship should meet the following criteria:

  • National and International recognition for excellence in health and medical science
  • Significant, sustained and ongoing contributions to advance health and medical science in Australia (relative to opportunity)
  • Contribution to the profession through leadership and mentorship
  • Raised public understanding and promoting health and medical science in the broader community

Download criteria for Fellowship

Each year, current Fellows of the Academy are invited to nominate up to four new candidates who meet the criteria and fulfil the required expectations.

To ensure the Academy has a representative and diverse membership, Fellows nominating two new candidates are asked to include only a maximum of one man, and Fellows nominating four new candidates are asked to include only a maximum of two men.

How to make a nomination

Fellows wishing to nominate a candidate for Fellowship should contact the secretariat to confirm candidate eligibility and receive and instructions on how to submit the completed nomination documentation online. 

Fellows wishing to nominate a candidate for a Corresponding Fellowship should contact the secretariat for more information.

Secretariat contact details
Email: [email protected]

Phone: 07 3102 7220

Nomination guidelines for ordinary Fellowship

October 2023
Newly elected Fellows of 2023 are inducted at the Annual Meeting.

18 September 2023- 30 November 2023
Nominations are invited from existing Fellows until the closing date of 30 November.

December 2023
Nominations allocated to Selection Committees.

January – April 2024
Referees’ reports sought.

Early May 2024
Selection Committees meet to consider nominations and provide final recommendations to the Council.

Early-to-mid-July 2024
Council meets to finalise recommendations.

Late July 2024
Full Fellowship invited to comment on recommended new fellows.

August 2024
Election results are shared with proposers and candidates (under embargo).

October 2024
Newly elected Fellows of 2024 inducted at the Annual Meeting.

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