Professor John Mackenzie

AO, FTSE, FASM
"The then Department of Microbiology had been without a professor for a period of about 18 months when I arrived. It had a strong research base, especially in microbial taxonomy and culture collections."

I was a professor of microbiology at UQ from January 1995 to April 2004.  For the latter part of that period I was Professor of Tropical Infectious Diseases.  Since retirement I have been an honorary professor of the School of Chemistry & Molecular Biosciences (SCMB).

The then Department of Microbiology had been without a Professor for a period of about 18 months when I arrived at the beginning of 1995. It had a strong research base, especially in microbial taxonomy and culture collections, but also in a number of other areas. Importantly for a new, incoming Professor, it had some excellent teaching and research staff members, including Chris Haywood, John Woolcock, Lindsay Sly, Al McEwan, John Fuerst and Paul Young, although Paul was located in the Sir Albert Sakzewski Virus Research Institute at that time.

I left UQ to accept the inaugural Premier's Research Fellowship in Western Australia where I established a small virology research centre at Curtin University with financial support from the Department of Premier and Cabinet, but maintaining a research link with colleagues at UQ both in the arbovirology area and in the Australian Biosecurity Collaborative Research Centre (ABCRC). I had conceived and later initiated the ABCRC with the late Professor Aileen Plant in 2002, and while the central node was located in the SCMB, a second node was established by Professor Plant at Curtin University.

In 2006 I was the inaugural winner of the Akademi Sains Malaysia Mahathir Science Award for Excellence in Research on Tropical Diseases.

I remain an Honorary Senior Principal Fellow at the Burnet Institute, Melbourne, a part-time Senior Medical Scientist-in-Charge at PathWest in Perth, and a member of the Western Australian Biosecurity Council.

In 2015, I helped to establish a not-for-profit international foundation, the One Health Platform, with two colleagues from the Netherlands and Belgium. This Foundation now runs the International One Health Congresses, the One Health Policy Forums, and with the One Health Commission and One Health Initiative in the United States, help coordinate the student research projects undertaken on the annual One Health Day (November 3rd).

I am a fellow of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering, the Australian Society for Microbiology, and the American Academy of Microbiology.

Professor John Mackenzie