- Harry Christian Giese Research into Action Award
- Menzies medallion
- The Companion of Menzies
- Val Asche Memorial Prize
- Ryan Family Prize
This year’s award, to Dr Josie Povey and her team, is the latest in continuing support for Menzies’ talented researchers.
Harry Christian Giese AM MBE (1913-2000) was a pioneer of health and education in north Australia and a key founder of the Menzies School of Health Research. From the late 1970s, he was on the National Executive of the Menzies Foundation, and later the School’s Board, until 1995. He served the people of the Northern Territory for 50 years. In memory of his work, the Giese Family, with Menzies developed the Harry Christian Giese Research into Action Award. This has supported Menzies’ dedicated researchers since 2013.
Josie’s project will build on work done during 2019-20 through the Ngawurramangajirri (‘We care for each other’) initiative. In collaboration with community leaders, a Tiwi-language digital resource for mental health and wellbeing will be created, developed and distributed. The aim is to improve mental health literacy, self-awareness and self-management, while strengthening connections to language and culture.
"We want to give people ways of recognising and talking about the challenges they face, such as caring for families, bereavement, grief and shame," said Josie.
"Together we’ll come up with resources that are strengths-based, engaging and relevant, that explore worries and goals for change, and incorporate best practice approaches to design and treatment."
Cathy Pumuralimawu Stassi, co-lead of the project and Tiwi Elder, said, "we are helping our people to keep our culture strong, respect each other and look after ourselves and others, our land and our creators, Purrukupali and his mother, Muntakala."
Earlier research has identified a real need for messaging to reach disadvantaged and vulnerable young people, including new parents. Josie's project will be part of the Australia-wide Stay Strong Program. There will be opportunities for collaboration with partner organisations and integration into existing work.
Earlier winners of the Award have moved on to develop their careers and improve the health of people in many different communities. Dr Bianca Middleton's (2022) work in validating the Vaccine Barriers Assessment Tool (VBAT) to encourage early childhood vaccination for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families, aims eventually to be part of a national roll-out.
Dr Gabrielle McCallum received this award in 2013, to champion the translation of lung health research into medical practice. Today, her team are studying children hospitalised in Australia and New Zealand for lower respiratory infections and are extending this work to Timor-Leste. She is also completing the editing of a special series, Frontiers in Paediatrics. A gap in the delivery of clinical care to paediatric patients with bronchiectasis, chronic lung disease, as they move into adolescence, has also been discovered.
Associate Professor Matthew Grigg (2014 award recipient) is part of a malaria study across eight sites in Indonesia, including human surveillance for zoonotic malaria; monkey camera estimates; mosquito trapping; and geospatial analysis of human risk of infection. A new Malaysian Army cohort study will look at exposure to zoonotic infections and malaria in those posted to remote forest areas. Matthew's post-doc student Jacob Westaway is analysing parasite strains from East Malaysian monkeys, to see if any are associated with transmission or disease severity in humans.
Associate Professor Kamala Ley-Thriemer (2018 award recipient) sends out a regular newsletter about work on clinical malaria trials with communities in Cambodia, Indonesia, Pakistan and Ethiopia. This was started during the COVID-19 lockdowns, when travel and on-the-ground networking became impossible. Visit the Malaria 'EFFORT' project page to read past editions of the newsletter.
Associate Professor Renae Kirkham (2017 award recipient) is Lead of the Diabetes across the Lifecourse: Northern Australian Partnership, supporting a program with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to break the cycle of type 2 diabetes.
Professor Jaquelyne Hughes (2016 award recipient), is the first Indigenous kidney specialist, and Matthew Flinders Professor at the College of Medicine and Public Health, Flinders University. Professor Gail Garvey (2015 award recipient) is NHMRC Leadership Fellow at the University of Queensland, Faculty of Medicine, working in cancer care.
The winners' ongoing projects all strengthen medical education, research and training in remote and regional communities.
The Menzies medallion is awarded by the Menzies Board to individuals or groups who have made a considerable contribution to health, of relevance to the Northern Territory.
In 2022, Professor Joan Cunningham was awarded the Menzies Medallion for her leadership in working towards improving equity of access to healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and her contribution to public health as a higher degree research supervisor and mentor.
Past medallion recipients:
- Professor Alex Brown
- Associate Professor Kelvin Kong
- Professor Peter d'Abbs
- Professor Paul Torzillo
- Professor Peter Morris
- Dr Christine Connors
- Dr Vicki Krause
- June Oscar AO
- Dr John Boffa
- Associate Professor Susan Sayers*
- Yalu' Marngithinyaraw Indigenous Corporation
- Ms Stephanie Bell
- Dr Valerie Asche*
- Ms Margaret Brewster
- Professor Bart Currie
- Father Frank LFlynn MSC AC*
- Mr Harry Giese AM MBE*
- Professor Michael Good
- Professor Richard Gye AO
- Dr John Hargrave AO MBE*
- Mrs Susan Hutton
- Professor David Kemp FAA*
- Professor John Mathews AM
- Dr Brian Reid
- Dr KS Sriprakash
The Ryan Family Prize is an internal annual award that recognises outstanding contributions to Menzies – individuals or groups who go above and beyond and help make Menzies a great place to work and/or to help Menzies achieve excellence.
The successful nominee is awarded with a $3000 prize and presented with a perpetual trophy.
The Companion of Menzies provides an opportunity to recognise exceptional contributions and support to the continued development and success of Menzies School of Health Research.
The 2021 recipients of the Companion of Menzies are:
Professor Simon Maddocks
Professor Simon Maddocks’s leadership as a past Charles Darwin University Vice Chancellor and previous Chair of the Menzies Board, contributed to crucial developments at Menzies. This includes initiatives to attract new researchers to the NT and securing funding for new Menzies facilitates at Royal Darwin Hospital and Charles Darwin University campuses.
Ms Olga Haven
Olga Haven spent her professional life advocating for the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. She has held a range of senior leadership roles across the public and private sector, and remains active in leading critical national initiatives and NT initiatives to support better outcomes for First Nations people. Olga has been a longstanding contributor to Menzies both as a previous board member, and through organisational partnerships.
Nanna Nungala Fejo
Nanna Nungala Fejo was a Warumungu woman who was forcibly removed from her family and community at Tennant Creek as an infant. Starting work in healthcare at the age of 16, she was a life-long advocate for improving the health of all. Passing in 2022, Nanna Nungala Fejo leaves a lasting legacy from her work with the Strong Women, Strong Babies, Strong Culture Program, helping to empower women in communities with culturally appropriate health care.
Pat Anderson AO
Pat Anderson’s leadership over many years in the establishment, growth and sustainability of Cooperative Research Centres (CRC) and the Lowitja Institute helped contribute to developing a cohort of leaders in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health research and community-driven approaches. She is a powerful social justice advocate who works tirelessly to improve health, education and protection outcomes for Australia’s First Peoples.
Professor Tony Barnes
Tony Barnes in his role as Director provided leadership of the CRC for Aboriginal and Tropical Health and maintains strong research collaborations and institutional engagement with Menzies through his leading role as a statistician and in exploring the demography of the Northern Territory at the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University.
Inaugural (2018) recipients:
Dr Val Asche
Dr Asche was the head of the microbiology research unit at Menzies School of Health Research from 1986 to 1994 under its founding director Professor John Mathews. She continues her support for Menzies and we have the annual Val Asche Prize for Academic Excellence.
The Hon Austin Asche AC QC
Austin Asche was Former Northern Territory Administrator, Chief Justice and Inaugural Chair of the Northern Territory University whose support over the years has been wonderful for all of us at Menzies.
Richard Ryan AO
Richard Ryan also has a long association with Menzies Chair for numerous years before becoming the inaugural Vice Chancellor of the Charles Darwin University (CDU). Richard returned to us from CDU and makes sure he keeps the wheels running as our treasurer and co-chairs our finance committee.
The Val Asche Memorial Prize for Academic Excellence:
Menzies Education and Training acknowledges the importance of recognising outstanding achievement by a student undertaking a coursework award.
The Val Asche Memorial Prize for Academic Excellence is awarded on an annual basis at the end of each academic year.
Dr Valerie Asche (Deceased) was the head of the microbiology research unit at Menzies School of Health Research from 1986 to 1994 under its founding director Professor John Mathews. Dr Asche supported this award for 19 years before sadly passing away in 2019. Dr Asche's family maintains an interest in education and continues to support academic excellence among Menzies students.
Established in 2001, the award is presented each year to students whose academic performance in a completed course has been outstanding.
Congratulations to Dr Matthew Nesbitt, Tarah Fantis and Jessica Harkness who have each been awarded the 2020 Val Asche Memorial Prize for Academic Excellence. The Val Asche Memorial Prize for Academic Excellence is awarded annually to recognise outstanding achievement by students...
Congratulations to Alexander Wetten, Hannah Singleton, April Carpenter and Fiona Johnson, who have each been awarded the 2019 Val Asche Memorial Prize for Academic Excellence.
Congratulations to Alison Fitzgerald, Clare Brown, Dr Eswaran Waran and Judith Watson, who have each been awarded the 2018 Val Asche Prize for Academic Excellence.
Congratulations to Gerrard Murray, Catherine Connolly and Chevy Brown who have been awarded the 2017 Val Ashe Prize for Academic Excellence.
Val Asche Prize for Academic Excellence: Congratulations to Emma Grimes, Jodi Phillips and Leigh Moore who have been awarded the 2016 Val Ashe Prize for Academic Excellence. The Val Asche Prize for Academic Excellence is awarded annually to recognise outstanding achievement by...
Congratulations to Josie Povey and Alexis Harper who have been awarded the 2015 Val Asche Prize for Academic Excellence.
Val Asche Prize for Academic Excellence: Congratulations to Heather Wallace and Camille Mewett who have been awarded the 2014 Val Ashe Prize for Academic Excellence. The Val Asche Prize for Academic Excellence is awarded annually to recognise outstanding achievement by students...
Congratulations to Rachel Conn and Zeina Hayes who have been awarded the 2013 Val Asche Prize for Academic Excellence.