Australian Education Achievement Award 2012

Professor Dr Adeeba Kamarulzaman receives the Australian Education Achievement Award 2012

The Australian High Commission is proud to honour Professor Dr Adeeba Kamarulzaman as the recipient of the Australian Education Achievement Award 2012.  This award is presented to an alumnus of an Australian education institution who has succeeded in their chosen field and made a significant contribution to society.

The Australian High Commissioner to Malaysia, H.E. Mr Miles Kupa presented the award to Professor Adeeba at the Australian Alumni Gala Dinner 2012, held recently in Kuala Lumpur.  The gala dinner is a yearly affair organised by the Malaysian Australian Alumni Council (MAAC).

Mr Kupa said Australia was proud to have played a part in educating talented leaders from around the world, such as Professor Adeeba.

“A good education lays the foundation from which leadership and initiative can flourish.  We congratulate Professor Adeeba on her success in the field of medicine.

“She will no doubt leave a valuable and lasting legacy to her nation, her students and the broader community,” he added.

Australia and Malaysia have forged a close relationship for over 60 years and education has been a vital link.  More than 300,000 Malaysians have graduated from Australian education institutions.  These alumni have used their knowledge, skills and networks to succeed across diverse areas including business, science, academia and government – and in the process, contributed to their nation and to their communities.

Chosen from a high calibre of nominees, this year’s Australian Education Achievement Award recipient Professor Adeeba, is instantly recognisable for her work in infectious disease and HIV/AIDS research.

Following her graduation from Monash University in 1987, Professor Adeeba trained in internal medicine and infectious diseases at the Monash Medical Centre and the Fairfield Infectious Diseases Hospital in Melbourne.  She undertook research at the National Centre of HIV Epidemiology and Clinical Research (NCHECR), which is affiliated with the University of New South Wales. Professor Adeeba received the Fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians before returning to Malaysia as a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Medicine, University of Malaya.  In July this year, she was appointed Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Malaya, the first female to hold this post.

In 2007, Professor Adeeba established one of the first infectious disease units in Malaysia, and subsequently the Centre of Excellence for Research in AIDS (CERiA), at the University of Malaya.  Since then, the centre has gained a national and international reputation as a tertiary referral centre for infectious diseases and has become one of the few dedicated HIV research centres in the region.  She has since dedicated her career to the prevention, treatment and research of infectious diseases and HIV/AIDS.

In 2011, Professor was honoured as one of 50 current and emerging women leaders in the Asia Pacific, at the ‘50 for the Future’ – Advanced Women’s Leadership Summit in Sydney.  She also received the Advance Global Australian Award, in the category of alumni, in April 2012, which recognises leaders and innovators in their field.

In addition to her clinical and academic commitments and achievements, she is also actively involved in the community response to HIV/AIDS in Malaysia.  She was the President of the Malaysian AIDS Council (MAC), an umbrella organisation for the HIV/AIDS NGOs.  Professor Adeeba continues to serve as an Executive Committee member with MAC and as Chairperson of the Malaysian AIDS Foundation.  She is actively involved in advocacy and the implementation of HIV prevention, treatment and care programs, particularly focusing on marginalised communities.

Professor Adeeba is a member of several regional and international committees including the United Nations Reference Group on HIV and Injecting Drug Use, and is currently Co-Chair of the WHO Technical and Strategic Advisory Committee on HIV/AIDS.

In 2013, Professor Adeeba, together with Nobel Laureate and discoverer of the HIV virus Mr Francoise Barre-Sinoussi, will host a large scientific conference on HIV in Kuala Lumpur, which is expected to attract 6,000 scientists and clinicians working on HIV from around the world.