Patron, Fiona Stanley AC

Fiona 1

  • Founding Director and Patron
  • Distinguished Research Professor, The University of Western Australia
  • Vice Chancellor's Fellow, and Director - 2013 Festival of Ideas, The University of Melbourne
  • Australian of the Year 2003
  • Established the Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth in 2002
  • UNICEF Australia Ambassador for Early Childhood Development
  • The Fiona Stanley Hospital named in her honour

Fiona 2 

Named Australian of the Year in 2003, Professor Fiona Stanley is a vocal advocate for the needs of children and their families.
Professor Stanley was the founding Director of the Telethon Kids Institute, established in Perth in 1990. When she retired from the position in December 2011, the Institute had grown to more than 500 staff and students and forged an international reputation for its translational research in a range of areas.

On her retirement, Professor Stanley graciously accepted an invitation from the Board to take on the position of Patron, where she continues to advocate for the Institute, research and families.

Jonathon _and _Fiona _web
Professor Stanley remains a Chief Investigator on a number of research grants at the Telethon Kids Institute and is a valued mentor to many. She also continues her strong association with the University of Western Australia as a Vice Chancellor's Distinguished Professorial Fellow in the  School of Paediatrics and Child Health. 


Named in her honour, the new Fiona Stanley Hospital in Perth is due to open at the end of 2014. The Fiona Stanley Hospital will be one of the best in Australia - a leader in clinical care, research and education, supported by an innovative design that uses the latest scientific, technological and medical developments.


Main research contributions

  1. preventing spina bifida with folate
  2. investigating the pathways into the cerebral palsies and other disorders
  3. developing record linkage of population data for epidemiology
  4. Aboriginal child health and wellbeing


Born in Sydney in 1946, she moved to Perth with her family in 1956. She studied medicine at the University of Western Australia and practised in hospitals for two years before going to the United Kingdom and USA for further training in epidemiology (the science of describing and explaining the occurrence of disease in populations), biostatistics and public health.
In 2004, Professor Stanley was honoured as a "National Living Treasure" by the National Trust. She is the UNICEF Australia Ambassador for Early Childhood Development.

Professor Stanley has more than 300 published papers in scientific journals and  is a member of the Prime Minister's Science, Engineering and Innovation Council. She has served on the Federal Government's Social Inclusion Board and the WA State Government's Indigenous Implementation Board. She has given many presentations, both nationally and internationally, on the socio-economic determinants of child health.

Professor Stanley remains committed to a number of important roles, including: Distinguished Research Professor at the School of Paediatrics and Child Health, UWA; Vice Chancellor's Fellow, University of Melbourne; member of the ABC Board; and Chair of the newly-formed Alcohol Advertising Review Board.

Professor Stanley is married to Professor Geoffrey Shellam. They have two daughters and three grandchildren.


Fiona Stanley's research profile

Fiona Stanley school project information

Subscribe to our e-news

Mailing list terms and Conditions

By subscribing to this service you are giving Telethon Kids Institute permission to contact you direct via email. You may unsubscribe at anytime via the emails sent to you.

Your email address will not be disclosed to any third party.

Please agree with the Terms & Conditions.