Doug Hilton receives accolade for grassroots outreach

By Tim Dean
Wednesday, 16 November, 2011

Professor Doug Hilton is passionate about community outreach. And Research Australia has just recognised the outreach work of Hilton, who is head of the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, with a Leadership and Innovation Award, issued tonight in gala dinner held in Melbourne’s National Gallery of Victoria.

Hilton was the driver behind the Discoveries Need Dollars: Protect Medical Research campaign that helped rally public support behind health and medical research in the face of rumoured budget cuts by the federal government earlier this year.

The movement helped coordinate a grassroots campaign to defend health and medical research funding, with numerous rallies cropping up around the nation. Ultimately the government increased funding for health and medical research rather than cutting it, as had been rumoured.

According to Research Australia, Hilton’s leadership of the Discoveries Need Dollars campaign, along with other initiatives such as making WEHI more accommodating to women researchers, contributed strongly to his receiving the award.

Hilton was also the most nominated individual for the category.

Hilton told ALS he was particularly delighted to receive the award as it recognises his work in an area that is very important to him.

“It captures something I’m very passionate about, which is working with the community and enabling them to have a voice about why medical research is important to them,” he said.

Other recipients of Research Australia Awards include:

  • 2011 Research Australia National Youth Ambassador: Miss Simran Dhaliwal
  • Griffith University Discovery Award: Oliver Baumann B.S.c, M.S.c., PhD
  • Leadership in Corporate Giving: David Jones
  • Hunter Medical Research Institute Great Australian Philanthropy Award: The Sylvia & Charles Viertel Charitable Foundation
  • Bupa Advocacy Award: Stephen R Leeder
  • Research Australia Lifetime Achievement Award: Laureate Professor Peter C. Doherty, AC FAA FRS
  • The Peter Wills Medal: Professor John Shine AO FAA
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