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Saturday, 26 January 2013
A University of Adelaide professor who has devoted much of his career to saving people's lives - by investigating the deaths of others - has today been made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in the Australia Day honours.
Forensic pathologist Professor Roger Byard has been awarded an AO for "distinguished service to medicine in the field of forensic pathology as an academic, researcher and practitioner and through contributions to professional committees and organisations".
As the Marks Professor of Pathology at the University of Adelaide and Senior Specialist Forensic Pathologist with Forensic Science SA, Professor Byard spends much of his time examining, investigating and researching people's deaths.
He is prolific in sharing this knowledge so that others can benefit from it, such as his warnings on accidental child deaths and research into the cause of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
Professor Byard is a Consultant Paediatric Forensic Pathologist with the Women's and Children's Hospital, Adelaide, and contributes to a range of international and Australian groups aimed at preventing child accidents and deaths.
He also contributes his time to investigating and reporting on marine mammal and wildlife deaths in the hopes of conserving marine species.
Professor Byard was part of a team involved in the identification of victims of the 2002 Bali bombings, and again helped to identify victims of the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami in Thailand. For this work he was awarded the Humanitarian Overseas Service Medal and the Australian Federal Police (AFP) Operations Medal.
Professor Byard was also awarded the Public Services Medal (PSM) in 2004 for outstanding public service to paediatric pathology.
The University's Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Warren Bebbington, congratulated Professor Byard on his new Australia Day honour.
"This very prestigious honour is a testament to the great work Professor Byard has done at the University of Adelaide, and in the wider community," Professor Bebbington said.
"It reinforces his standing as one of Australia's foremost experts in forensic pathology and recognises his outstanding track record in research, teaching and clinical settings.
"Professor Byard's unique contribution to forensic pathology, in particular disaster victim identification and sudden death in childhood, has made a huge impact on the lives of countless families. His work has also been pivotal to law reform in this country, leaving an enduring legacy in a difficult and highly emotive area of medicine.
"On behalf of the University of Adelaide community, I congratulate him on this much-deserved award."
Australia Day honours for University of Adelaide staff and former and affiliate staff:
AC - Companion in the General Division of the Order of Australia
Visiting Professor The Hon. Alexander Downer
AO - Officer in the General Division of the Order of Australia
Professor Roger Byard
Emeritus Professor Robert Goldney
Emeritus Professor Colin Matthews
Emeritus Professor George Rogers
AM - Member in the General Division of the Order of Australia
Dr Brian Cornish
Professor Malcolm Gillies
Dr Michael Llewellyn-Smith
The Hon. Dr Jane Lomax-Smith
Associate Professor Jonathan Phillips
Professor Dinesh Selva
OAM - Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division
Dr Robert Gerner