Leading Australian public health expert and the former Vice Chancellor of the University of Melbourne reveals his ethos, drives and the highs and lows of a life built on making waves.
Throughout his academic and medical careers, David Penington has been an agent of change.
In his fascinating memoirs, one of Australia’s leading public health experts and the former Vice Chancellor of the University of Melbourne reveals his ethos, drives and the highs and lows of a life built on making waves.
Appointed at St Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne, he fostered new medical research specialty areas in haematology, medical oncology, endocrinology, gastroenterology and later neurology, and renal disease–a strategic development for a public hospital in the early 1970s.
At the University of Melbourne, he was Professor and then Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, before becoming Vice Chancellor in 1988. During his tenure, he strongly resisted major and damaging government intrusion into the operations of universities, all the while reforming the education, research and management practices at the University of Melbourne.
He has been at the forefront of national public health policy for more than twenty years, including four years chairing the National AIDS Task Force for the Hawke government. In 1984 he was Chair of the National Committee of Inquiry into a dispute between the government and the medical profession over public hospitals, which was key to the implementation of the Medicare system. He has also led two inquiries into illicit drug policies.
Making Waves details a tireless leader who at every stage of his working life has never shunned public controversy in a bid to improve the lives of all Australians.