Dr Bernard Bowen, Chair of the International Centre of Radio Astronomy Research − a collaboration between Curtin University and The University of Western Australia − was inducted at a WA Science Awards gala dinner at the Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre last night.
He joined fellow UWA colleagues Professor Fiona Stanley, inducted in 2010 for her lifelong work in medical research, and Professor Barry Marshall, inducted in 2007 for his Nobel Prize winning cure for peptic ulcers.
“It was a pleasant surprise to receive this award last night, I am very grateful to have been able to serve Western Australian Science over the past 50 plus years, and to still have the opportunity to be involved,” says Dr Bowen.
The WA Science Awards are an event attended by WA’s scientific glitterati to celebrate the year’s top scientists, educators and outreach initiatives around the state and have included an induction into the hall of fame since 2007.
With a career spanning our oceans to our skies, Dr Bowen has played an important role in the way WA fisheries are sustainably managed and the protection of our local marine environment. He was appointed the WA Department of Fisheries and Wildlife’s first research scientist in 1957 and went on to spend more than 20 years at the helm of the Department. His current role now sees him take his experience to the field of astronomy as chairman of the board at the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR).
“Dr Bowen’s long and distinguished career in Western Australian Science was very deservedly recognised last night. His knowledge and experience within the scientific community are an asset to ICRAR and I am delighted to be able to congratulate him on this further achievement,” says ICRAR Director Professor Peter Quinn.
In 1991 Dr Bowen was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia for services to the fishing industry and in 2002 received an Honorary Doctorate from Murdoch University in recognition of his distinguished career and contribution to WA marine science, resource management and environmental protection.
In accepting the accolade at the WA Science Awards award ceremony last night, Dr Bowen highlighted the importance of having the support of the WA Government over a number of decades by way of the provision of funds for people and for infrastructure, and also of having the good fortune to work with some extremely competent colleagues.
During his career Dr Bowen has played a significant role in WA science through the development of four research institutes: the WA Fisheries and Marine Research Laboratories, the WA Wildlife Research Centre, the WA Marine Science Institution and most recently, ICRAR.
This latest success may prove to be an integral part in bringing the world’s biggest radio telescope, known as the Square Kilometre Array, to our shores with an announcement due early next year.
Western Australian Science Awards at the Western Australian Department of Commerce:
Image Credit: The Western Australian Department of Commerce.
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