Top Australia Day Honour for Chancellor

La Trobe University Chancellor, Professor Richard Larkins AO, has been awarded a Companion of the Order (AC) in this year’s Australia Day Honours list.

Professor Larkins was awarded this highest ranking award in recognition of his eminent service to medicine and medical research, to education through academic leadership, to public health care, and to the community.

Professor Larkins said he was delighted to be awarded an AC in this year’s list.

“I have been very fortunate to have worked with outstanding people throughout my career and I feel that this award is as much to acknowledge their efforts and achievements as it is to acknowledge mine. I have also had the support of a remarkable family and I particularly acknowledge my wife Caroline who has played a vital role in everything I have achieved,” Professor Larkins said.

“I have been particularly privileged to have worked at three great universities, most recently La Trobe. I believe that universities play a crucial role in society by educating the professional workforce and leaders of the future, as well as by undertaking the research and scholarship necessary to solve global problems such as clean energy and the environment, health problems, poverty, and food and water for 9.5 billion people by the middle of this century.”

La Trobe University Vice-Chancellor Professor John Dewar congratulated Professor Larkins and said he was a worthy recipient of the AC.

“It is fitting and appropriate that as we soon farewell Professor Larkins as La Trobe’s Chancellor, a scholar of such national and international standing should be awarded this highest accolade,” Professor Dewar said.

“Throughout his extraordinary career, Professor Larkins has made a significant and lasting contribution to the university, research and medical sectors.

“And during his time at La Trobe he has helped strengthen the University’s position as one of Victoria’s leading higher education institutions.”

Professor Dewar also acknowledged all of the other recipients of this year’s Australia Day Honours.

“I congratulate everyone who has received Australia Day Honours today, and especially the many alumni, staff and friends of La Trobe who have received these esteemed awards in recognition of their significant national and global contribution,” Professor Dewar said.

Professor Richard Larkins AC, AO, FTSE, FAAHMS - Biography

Professor Richard Larkins AC, AO, FTSE, FAAHMS, is the Chancellor of La Trobe University.

He is also a Governor of the Sir Ian Potter Foundation, Chair of the Life Sciences Panel of the National Research Foundation of Singapore and Chair of the Life Sciences Research Board of the Austin Hospital.

He was Vice-Chancellor and President of Monash University from 2003 to 2009. Prior to taking up this appointment, Professor Larkins had been Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences at the University of Melbourne since 1998. Before becoming Dean, he held the James Stewart Chair of Medicine at the Royal Melbourne Hospital from 1984 to 1997.

He has also served as Chair of the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre from 2009 to 2016, President of the National Stroke Foundation, Chair of the Council of EMBL Australia, Chair of Universities Australia, Chair of the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia, President of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians, member of the Prime Minister’s Science, Engineering and Innovation Council, member of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Council, Chair of the Medical Schools Accreditation Committee of the Australian Medical Council, and as President of the Endocrine Society of Australia.

Professor Larkins holds the degrees of Bachelor of Surgery and Doctor of Medicine from the University of Melbourne, and the degree of Doctor of Philosophy from the University of London. He has been awarded the degree of Doctor of Laws (Hon) by both the University of Melbourne and Monash University.

He is a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians, a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians (London), a Fellow of the Academies of Medicine of Singapore and Malaysia.

He is also an Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, Thailand, the American College of Physicians and the Ceylon College of Physicians.

Professor Larkins was awarded the Eric Susman Prize for Medical Research in 1982: his research and his clinical work were in endocrinology, diabetes and calcium and bone disorders.

In 2002 he was appointed as an Officer in the General Division of the Order of Australia.

Professor Larkins will step down as Chancellor of La Trobe University on 29 March 2019, when Professor John Brumby AO will take on the role.

Media Contact: Claire Bowers – - 9479 2315 / 0437 279 903