Royal Society of Tasmania
Medal presentation and lecture delivered by
Her Excellency Professor the Honourable Kate Warner AC Governor of Tasmania
Government House Hobart
On Tuesday 16 March 2021, members of the Royal Society of Tasmania met at Government House as guests of Her Excellency Professor the Honourable Kate Warner AC, Governor of Tasmania, and Mr Richard Warner AM.
The evening was devoted to RST medal presentations and a lecture by Her Excellency. President Mary Koolhof summarised the history and intentions of the two medals to be awarded, the Clive Lord Medal and the MR Banks Medal.
The Clive Lord Medal is awarded to a scholar distinguished for research in Tasmanian science or Tasmanian history. Clive Lord was an acclaimed naturalist, a stalwart of the Royal Society of Tasmania and a director of the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery. The 2019 winner is Professor Jamie Kirkpatrick AM, Distinguished Professor in Geography and Environmental Studies at the University of Tasmania. Professor Kirkpatrick’s career has been devoted to helping students learn about nature, researching its characteristics and conservation, and engaging with wider society on issues of conservation reserves and the natural environment. His Clive Lord Lecture “Cyclic dynamics in Tasmanian high mountain treeless vegetation” can be viewed on the RST YouTube channel.
The MR Banks Medal is awarded to an outstanding mid-career researcher in any field. It is named in honour of past Society President and tireless supporter, the late Dr Max Banks. In 2019 for the first time in the medal’s history, there were two MR Banks medallists: Associate Professor Arko Lucieer and Dr Eloise Foo.
Professor Lucieer leads the TerraLuma research group at the University of Tasmania, focusing on the development and application of drones, sensor integration, and image processing techniques for environmental, agricultural, and high-precision aerial mapping applications. His MR Banks Medal lecture, “From Surface to Satellites – how remote sensing from drones advances our understanding of plant biodiversity” is available for viewing on the RST YouTube channel .
Dr Eloise Foo established a new research area at the University of Tasmania examining the role of plant hormones in plant-microbe symbioses. Her research contributes to an Australia-wide effort seeking to harness the power of plants for improving agricultural and ecological outcomes. Her MR Banks Lecture, “Dating in the dark – The underground world of beneficial plant-microbe relationships” is also available for viewing on the RST YouTube channel.
Following the medal presentations, Her Excellency Professor the Honourable Kate Warner AC, Governor of Tasmania, delivered a lecture entitled “Improving literacy and education standards in Tasmania”. The lecture was based largely on Her Excellency’s involvement with the Basics project, the Peter Underwood Centre for Educational Attainment, Connect42, 26Ten and Child and Family Centres around the state since becoming Governor. The full text of the lecture is available here .