ANU delighted with proposal for a new electorate of Fenner

11 September 2015

This honour will place ANU and its outstanding research strengths at the heart of the Canberra community.

The University is delighted with the proposal to name one of Canberra's federal electorates after distinguished Professor Frank Fenner AC.

"This is a great honour for Professor Fenner's family and the University," said Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Young AO.

"This honour will place ANU and its outstanding research strengths at the heart of the Canberra community, and demonstrate the University's ties with Canberra."

Professor Fenner, who died in 2010 aged 95, was one of Australia's greatest scientists. He is best known for his work to control Australia's rabbit plague, for helping to eradicate smallpox around the world, and for his work to fight malaria in Papua New Guinea.

The Australian Electoral Commission announced the proposal to re-name the electorate of Fraser as the new seat of Fenner following its latest review of electoral boundaries. The electorate had been named in recognition of James Fraser, who was a member of the House of Representatives from the ACT from 1951 to 1970.

Professor Fenner first joined The John Curtin School of Medical Research (JCSMR) at ANU in 1949 as Professor of Microbiology, and rose to become Director of JCSMR from 1967 to 1973.

From 1973 to 1979, he set up and was Director of the Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies at ANU.

He was a foundation Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science, a Fellow of the Royal Society and a Foreign Associate of the United States National Academy of Sciences.

He was also one of Australia's most decorated scientists.

He won the Britannica Australia Award for Medicine, the Australia and New Zealand Association for the Advancement of Science Medal, the World Health Organization Medal, the Japan Prize, the Senior Australian Achiever of the Year, the Albert Einstein World Award for Science and the Prime Minister's Science Prize.

ANU continues to celebrate the work of Professor Fenner and has named the Fenner Building, the Fenner School of Environment and Society, and Fenner Hall in his honour.

ANU also awards the annual Frank Fenner Medal for top PhD thesis each year.