History makers

As part of our 50 Years of Innovation celebrations we’re highlighting some of the people who helped make Curtin the successful, global university it is today. We will be adding profiles throughout the year and hope you enjoy learning about our history makers.

(Content has been drawn from WAIT to Curtin: A History of the Western Australian Institute of Technology by Michael White and Look Ever Forward: A History of Curtin University 1987-2012 by Susan Hart.)

Emeritus Professor Warren Grubb

#Lifetime Achievement Award
#molecular genetic studies
#research

Warren Grubb joined WAIT in 1979 and was among the first to obtain National Health and Medical Research Council grants, which contributed to the Institute’s case for university status. His molecular genetic studies on methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) or golden staph led to the development of world-leading policies to prevent its spread in hospitals. … read more

Emeritus Professor Warren Grubb
Bentley campus

Datuk Patinggi Dr George Chan

#development of Sarawak and Miri
#driving force
#honorary Doctor of Technology

Datuk Patinggi Dr George Chan was a driving force behind the establishment of Curtin Malaysia, and was closely involved in the campus from its first days.  He received an honorary Doctor of Technology award from Curtin University in 2002 in recognition of his efforts in establishing Curtin Malaysia and his contribution to the development of… read more

Datuk Patinggi Dr George Chan
Sarawak campus

Professor Lance Twomey AO

#Faculty of Business
#Malaysia
#sarawak

As Vice-Chancellor and President of Curtin University Professor Lance Twomey was instrumental in the establishment of the Curtin Malaysia campus in Sarawak. The building housing the Faculty of Business in Sarawak has been named after him. Lance Twomey started his career at WAIT teaching physiotherapy, having gained a Diploma of Teaching from the Perth Technical… read more

Professor Lance Twomey AO
Sarawak campus

Sir Laurence Brodie-Hall AO

#influential supporters
#leading figure
#WASM

Western Australian School of Mines (WASM) graduate Sir Laurence Brodie-Hall was a leading figure in WA’s mining industry and one of the strongest and most influential supporters of the mining school.  Laurence Brodie-Hall migrated to Australia from London in 1924. He was a prospector in the Murchison and Eastern Goldfields during the depression, before commencing… read more

Sir Laurence Brodie-Hall AO
Kalgoorlie campus

Emeritus Professor Lesley Parker AM

#first woman
#gender equality
#science and technology

The first woman appointed to a significant senior executive role at Curtin, Lesley Parker was named Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor in 1997. She is known nationally and internationally for her work in progressing gender equality in education, especially in science and technology. Commencing her career as a secondary teacher of science and mathematics, Lesley Parker rose… read more

Emeritus Professor Lesley Parker AM
Bentley campus

Emeritus Professor Margaret Nowak

#CBS
#CGSB
#first MBA program

Margaret Nowak established the first MBA program in the Curtin Business School in 1988 and led the Curtin Graduate School of Business (CGSB), the University’s first venture in the city, for many years. After gaining a PhD in Economics from Murdoch University, Margaret Nowak was Founding Director and Head of School of the CGSB from… read more

Emeritus Professor Margaret Nowak
Bentley campus

Emeritus Professor Elizabeth Jolley

#cherished figure
#creative writing

One of Australia’s defining authors, Elizabeth Jolley wrote 15 novels and four short story collections during her distinguished career. She was a cherished figure in the Creative Writing course at WAIT and Curtin for more than 20 years. Born in Birmingham, England in 1923 to an English father and Austrian mother, Elizabeth Jolley attended schools… read more

Emeritus Professor Elizabeth Jolley
Bentley campus

Emeritus Professor John de Laeter

#outstanding academics
#physical sciences research
#renowned

An internationally renowned physicist, John de Laeter is one of the most outstanding academics in the history of the University. The visionary behind significant science initiatives, de Laeter strongly influenced the direction of physical sciences research in Western Australia. Educated at Perth Modern School, The University of Western Australia and McMaster University Canada, John de… read more

Emeritus Professor John de Laeter
Bentley campus

Associate Professor Ron Hartley

#Department of Computer and Data Processing
#father of IT
#leader

Regarded as the ‘father of IT’ at WAIT, Ron Hartley was the inaugural head of the Department of Computer and Data Processing and was responsible for numerous innovative developments that saw the Institute become a leader in computing.  Ron Hartley was one of the few qualified computer specialists in Western Australia in the late 1960s,… read more

Associate Professor Ron Hartley
Bentley campus