Sir Gustav Nossal, Australian of the Year 2000, has made a remarkable contribution to science and technology. His influence has formed and shaped the scientific affairs of Australia for four decades, and continues to do so. Sir Gus’ research accomplishments are world-renowned. His work confirmed Burnet’s theory of antibody formation. This was a turning point in understanding the immune system. As a researcher, and as Director of The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research over thirty-one years, he has helped build the foundations of modern immunology. Under his directorship, the Institute went from strength to strength; it is still the pre-eminent medical research institute in Australia and one of the great medical research institutes of the world.
Sir Gus has been an energetic warrior for improving global health through his long-term involvement with the World Health Organization, including as Chairman of the Global Programme for Vaccines and Immunization.
In 2000, the Post-Polio Network (NSW) Inc (a founding member of Polio Australia) invited Sir Gus to become its Patron. In reply, he wrote “… congratulations on the very important work [the Post-Polio Network is] doing. I am proud now to be your Patron.”
As can be seen in this video, Sir Gus is still leading the fight to see The End of Polio – a grassroots campaign coordinated by the Global Poverty Project in support of global polio eradication efforts.