Thursday, 31 August 2022

Rod and I warmly welcome you to Government House to honour the 2022 Lions Medical Research Foundation Scholarship winner as well as recognise outstanding service to Lions.

It is a pleasure to be able to do so today in light of the scholarship not having been able to be presented for the past two years due to COVID- elated challenges.

South Australia has long had a tradition of world-leading medical research.

We need look no further than the garden outside Government House to see the bust honouring eminent medical scientist Howard Florey who played a vital role in the discovery of penicillin.

His bust stands amongst those of other eminent scientists such as Sir Lawrence and Sir William Bragg, after whom the Australian Bragg Centre for Proton Therapy under construction further down North Terrace as part of the Adelaide bio-medical precinct, is named.

As part of this precinct the Royal Adelaide Hospital, SAHMRI, and our universities and other institutions further afield are continuing to build South Australia’s reputation for innovation and discovery.

Through such collaborative research we are finding new medicines, new treatments and new ways to save lives.

By supporting our best and brightest young medical scientists we are investing in healthy futures not only for our own community, but around the world where needs are pressing.

Rod and I congratulate the Lions Medical Research Foundation for backing our “home grown” medical researchers through the scholarship program.

It is a generous scholarship and I am sure goes a long way to providing vital support for the recipient’s long journey of discovery.

As Rod and I have toured Adelaide’s research institutions, we have been impressed by the passion and innovation of our scientists who are making significant medical advances.

Today we congratulate the 2022 scholarship recipient Emma Cheney who is undertaking research at the University of Adelaide.

Having received a perfect mark for her undergraduate degree, Emma is now a PhD candidate undertaking research into the currently incurable multiple myeloma blood cancer.

Emma is passionate about developing new treatment strategies that improve patient survival and quality of life.

Emma, congratulations on being awarded this year’s scholarship and well done on being chosen from 28 applicants.

I am sure I speak for everyone here in wishing you the best for your research and your future career.  We look forward to hearing of your progress.

To the Lions Medical Research Foundation, thank you for your commitment to building a better South Australia.

Your investment of $35,000 a year for three years for each scholarship is substantial, and I know is given from the heart. It is the result of the hard work of many Lions in fundraising.

The research you have supported has included cardiac disease, prostate cancer treatments, wound healing and airway obstruction in the newborn.

Your management of the Skin Cancer Screening Mobile Unit servicing South Australia and the Northern Territory has had a 20% referral rate to medical professionals, a vital early warning.

Today we are also honouring advisors and foundation trustees who are concluding their service with the foundation after many years of volunteering.

I thank Robert Dewell, Graeme Pascoe and Michael Millar for your commitment to South Australia and your determination to  make a difference in our community.

To the Dr Robert Cooter Award recipients, Carol Barnes and Christine Haar, who could not be with us today, thank you for bringing your expertise in nursing to Lions and readily giving of your experience and expertise.

Rod and I give our heartfelt thanks to the Lions Medical Research Foundation for your unwavering support of the health of our community and wish you all the best for the future.