The winners of the 2020 Clunies Ross Awards were announced in a national online event on 30 July 2020.
The Clunies Ross Awards have been offered since 1991, recognising people who have shared their vision and knowledge to apply technology for the benefit of Australia.
Clunies Ross Entrepreneur of the Year 2020
Mr Mark Sullivan
Managing Director, Medicines Development for Global Health
Mark Sullivan is Founder and Managing Director of Medicines Development for Global Health, a biopharmaceutical company developing medicines based on need, not profit.
Mark recognised the importance of Moxidectin – an intestinal worm treatment for domesticated animals – for treating neglected infectious diseases in humans. Mark found funding, re-established manufacturing, and won approval for human use.
This year, additional human trials with more than 13,500 people will commence to demonstrate Moxidectin’s importance and win approval to use the drug to treat and eliminate onchocerciasis, or river blindness – the second most common cause of blindness due to infection.
Clunies Ross Award for Innovation 2020
Dr Alison Todd and Dr Elisa Mokany
Chief Scientific Officer and Chief Technology Officer, SpeeDx
Doctors Alison Todd and Elisa Mokany are dedicated to fostering entrepreneurship and innovation in Australia.
Together, Dr Todd and Dr Mokany created a new molecular ‘lego’ that is opening the door to personalised clinical diagnostics.
They’ve founded a successful company – SpeeDx – to roll out the technology which helps doctors choose personally targeted treatments.
They combine a profound, deep knowledge of molecular DNA and RNA-based detection – with flair and entrepreneurship, to develop their own inventions into fully-fledged products made in Australia and sold nationally and around the world.
Their products are fundamentally changing the way in which doctors work and patients heal.
Clunies Ross Award for Knowledge Commercialisation 2020
Dr Grant Douglas
Senior Principal Research Scientist, CSIRO Land & Water
Phosphorus run-off from fertiliser can cause major algal blooms that deplete water oxygen levels, and can cause fish die-offs, threaten fish farms and compromise fresh drinking water supplies.
Dr Grant Douglas from CSIRO Land & Water has developed and patented a new phosphorus-adsorbent clay, Phoslock™, which addresses the source of harmful algae.
Dr Douglas has proved Phoslock™ effectively removes phosphorus without any lasting effects or adverse impact on the environment.
Now, the product is used in more than 20 countries to control and prevent algal blooms. And Phoslock™ is the core product for a $750M ASX-listed company.