Previous Australian of the Year Professor Michelle Simmons will help steer Australia’s national science agency, with the quantum physicist among a series of appointments to the CSIRO board.

Professor Simmons has been appointed for five years. Chairman David Thodey AO has been reappointed Chairman of the Board for 12 months. Kathryn Fagg AO has been elevated to Deputy Chairperson, while Professor Edwina Cornish AO, has been reappointed for a further 3 year term.

Announcing the appointments recently, Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews said the Board members were all dedicated to using science to improve the lives of all Australians and to power the growth of industry.

“These appointments bring a wealth of experience to CSIRO, especially as the agency plays a leading role in our nation’s global pandemic response,” Minister Andrews said.


“These appointments come at a critical time when science and technology are being used to bolster Australia’s COVID-19 recovery and long-term resilience – whether that’s in the quest for a vaccine or driving industry to capitalise on the economic opportunities that will create jobs.”

Professor Simmons, who was Australian of the Year in 2018, said she is looking forward to working with CSIRO.
“Australia’s future will be underpinned by the quality of our science and our capacity to nurture science-based industries. CSIRO plays a pivotal role in these respects,” Professor Simmons said.

Mr Thodey said he was pleased to continue as Chairman of the Board.

“I look forward to continuing to work with this great organisation, trusted by so many Australians,” Mr Thodey said.

“It is an honour to be able to support CSIRO’s talented people as they partner with industry and other researchers, to solve the greatest challenges through innovative science and technology.”