Snowdome Board member wins prestigious ‘Peter Wills Medal’

Congratulations to Snowdome Board member and 2014 Melburnian of the Year, Professor Sharon Lewin, who received Research Australia‘s most prestigious award at their Annual Awards function on November 18.

The Peter Wills Medal recognises an Australian who has made an outstanding contribution to building Australia’s international reputation in the area of health and medical research, and for harnessing government, research, industry and philanthropic collaborations to promote better health.

As a Director of the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, a partnership between The Royal Melbourne Hospital and The University of Melbourne, Sharon’s leadership in science and her HIV research is renowned globally as the world continues its search for a cure.

Sharon has been working in the field of HIV for over 20 years and leads a large, multi-disciplinary research team at the Doherty Institute that focuses on understanding why HIV persists on treatment and developing clinical trials aimed at ultimately finding a cure for HIV infection.

Professor Lewin said she was incredibly humbled by receiving the Peter Wills Medal. “Medical research and translation is all about team work and I have been privileged to have had the opportunity to have worked with many outstanding colleagues in the HIV scientific, clinical and community sectors across Australia and internationally,” she said. “The award of the Peter Wills Medal to me recognises this extraordinary team effort.”

Sharon has published over 200 publications and has been continually funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) since 1993. She was local co-chair for the International AIDS Conference held in Melbourne in July 2014 (AIDS2014), which was the largest health conference ever hosted in Australia, and was named Melburnian of the Year in the same year.

Research Australia said Sharon was chosen as the recipient of the award for her extraordinary body of research into HIV, the international recognition she has received for her work, her contribution to the community and the leadership she has shown for women in science.

Snowdome considers itself very fortunate to have Sharon involved in our quest to ‘make hope real’ for Australians fighting blood cancers.