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HomeminewsKing’s Birthday Honours List

King’s Birthday Honours List

Eye health professionals were well represented in the 2023 King’s Birthday Honours List.

There are two new Officers of the Order of Australia (AO) in Dr Sandra Staffieri and Professor Fiona Stapleton.

Members of the Order of Australia (AM) have been awarded to:

  • the late Richard Grills,
  • Clinical Associate Professor Andrew Chang
  • Distinguished Professor Justine Ruth Smith
  • Conjoint Professor Arthur Ho

Dr Brett O’Donnell has received a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM).

The King’s Birthday 2023 Honours List recognises and celebrates 1,192 recipients, including awards in the Order of Australia (General and Military Divisions), meritorious awards and recognition for distinguished and conspicuous service.

There are two new Officers of the Order of Australia (AO) in Dr Sandra Staffieri and Professor Fiona Stapleton.

Officers of the Order of Australia (AO)

Dr Sandra Staffieri AO has received her award for distinguished service to medicine as an orthoptist and vision researcher, and to paediatric ophthalmology.

She is a Research Fellow at CERA and the Retinoblastoma Care Co-ordinator/Senior Clinical Orthoptist at the Royal Children’s Hospital, Victoria.

Her research focus includes hereditary eye diseases: congenital glaucoma, congenital cataract, eye movement disorders and retinoblastoma.

Dr Staffieri completed a PhD at CERA, University of Melbourne. With the aim of reducing delayed diagnosis of retinoblastoma (eye cancer in children), her study included the development and evaluation of an information pamphlet for new parents describing important early signs of eye problems in children.

Scientia Professor Fiona Stapleton AO has been honoured for distinguished service to optometry as a researcher, mentor, and role model, to tertiary education, and to national and international organisations.

Prof Stapleton, from the School of Optometry and Vision Science at the University of New South Wales, is a clinical scientist with expertise in epidemiology, basic and clinical research in the fields of corneal infection, dry eye and contact lens related disease.

She holds numerous memberships and executive affiliations with scientific organisations, is a regular reviewer for a range of journals, belongs to the international editorial board of three journals, has more than 300 peer-reviewed publications, has contributed 20 chapters to textbooks and published one book.

She is currently President of the International Society for Contact Lens Research and is Academic Lead of the Sage Athena Swan initiative at UNSW. She was awarded Fellowship of the Australian Academy of Science and Technology in 2018.

Member of the Order of Australia (AM)

The late Richard Grills AM has been recognised posthumously for significant service to ophthalmology and retinal surgery as a clinician and educator. Mr Grills, who died last year, founded Designs for Vision. He was a director of the Optical Distributors and Manufacturers Association (ODMA) having previously served as its Chair for 10 years, a director of both the Genetic Eye Foundation and the Macular Disease Foundation Australia their inceptions and the Chair of the former Essilor Vision Foundation. He was also a member of the Visiting Advisory Board at both UNSW Optometry School and UTS Orthoptic School

Clinical Associate Professor Andrew Chang AM has been recognised for significant service to ophthalmology and retinal surgery as a clinician and educator.

He holds his academic appointment at The University of Sydney. He is a consultant ophthalmologist and the Head of Ophthalmology at the Sydney Eye Hospital, and the Medical Director of Sydney Retina Clinic and Day Surgery.

Distinguished Professor Justine Ruth Smith AM has been honoured for significant service to ophthalmology, particularly research and education.

Prof Smith is a Research Strategic Professor at Flinders University, Principal Research Fellow at SAHMRI, Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences, and Chair of the Academia Ophthalmologica Internationalis.

She is an internationally recognised expert in the causes, effects and treatment of uveitis. Her work extends to infection by parasites and viruses, and ocular cancers.

Conjoint Professor Arthur Ho AM has been honoured for significant service to optometry as a researcher, designer and educator.

Currently the Chief Scientist Innovation Officer at the Brien Holden Vision Institute Limited (BHVI), in addition to an appointment as Visiting Professorial Fellow at the School of Optometry and Vision Science, UNSW, Prof Ho is also holds academic appointments at the University of Miami in the United States.

Professor Ho’s current research focus is in myopia and presbyopia and particularly in understanding the opto-mechanical characteristics of the accommodation system and developing vision correction systems for controlling myopia progression.

Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM)

Dr Brett O’Donnell OAM has been recognised for service to ophthalmology. Dr O’Donnell is an oculoplastic cosmetic and reconstructive surgeon, dealing exclusively with conditions of the eyelids, tear ducts, and tumours around the eyes. He practises out of public and private hospitals in Sydney.