Appointment of Professor Matthew Kiernan AM as NeuRA Chief Executive Officer

NeuRA is thrilled to announce the appointment of Professor Matthew Kiernan AM to the position of Chief Executive Officer and Institute Director. This appointment marks a significant milestone for NeuRA and the beginning of a new era for our independent medical research institute, building on the strong foundations established by Professor Peter Schofield AO.

Professor Kiernan is a world-renowned clinical academic and scientist, whose research focuses on neurodegenerative disease, motor neuron disease (MND) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). Professor Kiernan is a neurologist who completed his PhD at UNSW Sydney and his specialty training at Prince of Wales and Prince Henry Hospitals. His research in neuroscience was recognized by the award of Doctor of Science (DSc) by UNSW in 2009. In 2015, he became a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences. He was honored with an Order of Australia in 2019 for significant service to medicine and to medical education, in the field of neurology’. In 2022, Professor Kiernan became the first Australian to receive the prestigious Sheila Essey Award from the American Academy of Neurology. In June 2023, he was awarded the Ramaciotti Medal for Excellence in Biomedical Research (Perpetual Trustees).

Currently, Professor Kiernan is co-Director of the Brain and Mind Centre, having been appointed inaugural co-Director at the Centre’s launch in 2015. Professor Kiernan is the Bushell Chair of Neurology at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and the University of Sydney, with academic responsibility for the discipline of neurology across the university’s multiple campuses.

James MacNevin, NeuRA Chair, said: We are looking forward to Professor Kiernan’s arrival with enormous anticipation, building on the strong foundations established by Professor Peter Schofield AO. Not only will he bring superlative standards of scientific, clinical, and academic excellence, he will also significantly boost NeuRA’s capacity in neurodegeneration, a primary focus of the Institute and a significant community need. I would also like to express my sincere appreciation to Carole Renouf as the Interim CEO for her dedication, professionalism, and valuable contributions during this important transition period.”

Professor Kiernan said: I am really excited by this incredible opportunity to join Neuroscience Research Australia and its stellar team of research scientists and clinicians. NeuRA’s foundations are firmly established and I am very much looking forward to building on the institute’s prime position in the rapidly accelerating fields of medical discovery. I look forward to working with key partnerships at UNSW, Mindgardens and the South Eastern Sydney Local Health District, and with industry and philanthropy to promote research at NeuRA, to enhance patient outcomes, and to make significant impacts for Australia, and globally. I thank the NeuRA Board for their great support.”

Professor Kiernan’s formal commencement date at NeuRA shall be confirmed shortly. On Professor Kiernan’s commencement, Carole Renouf will take up her new role as Executive Director Professional Services. 

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4 July 2023