2018 Academic promotions reflect push for gender equality in universities

Four staff in the Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences have been promoted to Professor in 2018 in recognition of their contributions to veterinary public health, cattle medicine, gastroenterology and agricultural extension and engagement.

Six staff were promoted to Associate Professor, and a further 12 to early- and mid-career positions.

A full list of promotions, and biographies of the staff promoted to Professor and Associate Professor, can be found below.

Academic staff apply for promotions based on their contributions including teaching, research and engagement. Academics at the highest levels, professors and associate professors, are also expected to undertake significant leadership responsibilities.

In the 2018 academic promotions round, three female staff in the Faculty were promoted to Professor, and five to Associate Professor.

The Australian Academy of Science reports that "Women comprise more than half of science PhD graduates and early career researchers, but just 17 per cent of senior academics in Australian universities and research institutes."

The University of Melbourne is a pilot institution for the Athena Swan Charter in Australia. The program aims to improve the retention and promotion of women and gender minorities, advance gender equality in academia, address the loss of women across the career pipeline, tackle gender pay gaps, remove obstacles faced by women and make sustainable structural and cultural changes to advance gender equality.

Professor John Fazakerley, Dean of the Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences, said the promotions reflected the high level of expertise and dedication of staff in the Faculty.

"Gender equality is important, and I am particularly pleased that we have several senior female promotions," he said.

"As a leading University, contributions made to both teaching and research are important and the promotions include staff with a heavy teaching workload."

Level E – Professor (effective 1 January 2019):

  • Joanne Devlin, Melbourne Veterinary School
    Professor Joanne Devlin, Director of Research at The Melbourne Veterinary School

    Professor Joanne Devlin is Director of Research at the Melbourne Veterinary School and a leader in veterinary virology and public health. She works on vaccine development and disease control with a focus on animal herpesviruses, including herpesviruses of wildlife and avian infectious laryngotracheitis virus an important cause of respiratory disease in poultry worldwide. She works in the Asia Pacific Centre for Animal Health within the Melbourne Veterinary School. Professor Devlin has coordinated and taught the veterinary public health program in the University’s veterinary degree since 2009.

  • Peter Mansell, Melbourne Veterinary School
    Professor Peter Mansell

    Professor Peter Mansell has maintained a heavy veterinary teaching load while holding several leadership roles on Faculty, University and external committees. He has principal responsibility for the Faculty's veterinary curriculum relating to cattle. He has also been an active researcher and has trained many higher degree students. Notably, Professor Mansell has been the University nominee on the Veterinary Practitioners Registration Board of Victoria since 2008 and is currently its President.

  • Caroline Mansfield, Melbourne Veterinary School
    Professor Caroline Mansfield, Director of U-Vet Werribee Animal Hospital

    Professor Caroline Mansfield is Director of U-Vet Werribee Animal Hospital and a leader in veterinary gastroenterology clinical research. She has made significant contributions to teaching and curriculum design in the DVM and coordinates the Veterinary Professional Practice subject. Her clinical research focuses on exocrine pancreatic disease and the interplay between the gastrointestinal microbiome and disease. Professor Mansfield contributes to leadership in the wider veterinary profession as an examiner and councillor and she is a past President of the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists.

  • Ruth Nettle, School of Agriculture and Food
    Professor Ruth Nettle, leader of the Rural Innovation Research Group

    Professor Ruth Nettle is leader of the Rural Innovation Research Group (RIRG) and an interdisciplinary social scientist of international standing in the field of agricultural extension and innovation and agricultural workforce change. She has participated extensively in Faculty and external committees and engaged with a wide range of research and industry partners. During her leadership, the RIRG has developed a strong reputation as a collaborator and innovator, made significant contributions to national policy debates and generated high-impact research publications. Professor Nettle has also developed innovative teaching and incorporated industry engagement and mentoring into the Faculty’s agricultural masters’ degrees.

Associate Professor (effective 1 January 2019):

An Associate Professor makes an outstanding contribution to the research, scholarship and/or teaching and administration activities of an organisational unit or interdisciplinary area.

Six staff in the Faculty were promoted to Associate Professor in 2018:

  • Catherine Beck, Melbourne Veterinary School

    A veterinary radiology teaching specialist and clinician at U-Vet, Associate Professor Catherine Beck teaches in the DVM and developed the world’s first wholly online veterinary abdominal ultrasound course. She holds, or has held, a range of leadership and committee roles at the University and in the Radiology chapter of the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists.

  • Helen Billman-Jacobe, Melbourne Veterinary School

    Associate Professor Helen Billman-Jacobe is a microbiologist undertaking research and teaching in food science and agriculture who has held a variety of leadership roles and is currently leader of the Livestock Animal Stream in the National Centre for Antibiotic Stewardship.

  • Elise Boller, Melbourne Veterinary School

    Associate Professor Elise Boller is an emergency and critical care clinician and teaching specialist at U-Vet. In addition to clinical teaching and practice, she has developed or contributed to several teaching tools in the DVM including clinical integrative puzzles, the Professional Portfolio subject and online assessment modules.

  • Sigfredo Fuentes, School of Agriculture and Food

    Associate Professor Sigfredo Fuentes lectures in Wine Science and has made important contributions to plant physiology monitoring and night-time transpiration of crops. He has also developed computer-based tools that have been applied nationally and internationally.

  • Carol Hartley, Melbourne Veterinary School

    Associate Professor Carol Hartley is a veterinary virologist focussing on equine and avian diseases. She delivers teaching on infection and immunity and the selection and interpretation of laboratory tests.

  • Leonie Richards, Melbourne Veterinary School

    Associate Professor Leonie Richards delivers clinical, teaching and public engagement as Head of Small Animal General Practice at U-Vet. She has made major contributions to the growth and reputation of the hospital, the development and delivery of clinical teaching and the wellbeing of students.

Early- and mid-career promotions

Six staff also received promotions to Senior Lecturer or Senior Research Fellow, and a further six to Lecturer or Research Fellow in recognition of their research, scholarship and/or teaching: