The Univeristy of Melbourne The Royal Melbourne Hopspital

A joint venture between The University of Melbourne and The Royal Melbourne Hospital

The Doherty Council

The Doherty Institute is governed by the Doherty Council, which comprises an independent chair, senior level executives from the University of Melbourne and The Royal Melbourne Hospital, and the Director of the Institute.

The Doherty Council

Martyn Myer AO - Chair

Martyn Myer is the independent chair of the Doherty Council. He is also the chair of Cogstate Ltd and a board member of the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Fishermans Bend Development Board and Watertrust Australia. As a trained engineer with degrees from Swinburne University, Monash University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he has a strong track record of bringing people together to execute and deliver complex projects. He brings breadth and depth of experience on the boards of commercial and not-for-profit organisations. Among his principal achievements was the creation of the Florey Neuroscience Institute, Australia’s and one of the world’s largest neuroscience institutes. He led the campaign to raise philanthropic funding for two new major research facilities at the University’s Parkville campus and the Austin Hospital. He also led the creation of one of the world’s best creative and visual arts campuses, the Faculty of Fine Arts and Music, in Melbourne’s Southbank Arts Precinct. This led to a $200+m investment over eight years, including the design and construction of a new $105m Conservatorium of Music.

Martyn Myer AO

Professor Sharon Lewin - Director

Leading infectious diseases expert Professor Sharon Lewin is the inaugural Director of the Doherty Institute. Sharon is also a Professor of Medicine at the University of Melbourne, a National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Practitioner Fellow and President of the International AIDS Society (IAS). As an infectious diseases physician and basic scientist, her laboratory focuses on basic, translational and clinical research aimed at finding a cure for HIV and understanding the interaction between HIV and hepatitis B virus. She has published over 260 publications and is funded by the NHMRC, the National Institutes of Health, The Wellcome Trust, the American Foundation for AIDS Research and multiple commercial partnerships. Sharon was local co-chair for the International AIDS Conference held in Melbourne in 2014. She is chair of the Ministerial Advisory Committee for Blood Borne Viruses and Sexually Transmitted Infections, the peak advisory committee to the Federal Minister for Health; a member of the NHMRC Council; an elected member of the Governing Council of the International AIDS Society representing the Asia-Pacific region; and was a foundation council member of the Australian Academy for Health and Medical Research. She was named Melburnian of the Year in 2014, awarded the Peter Wills Medal by Research Australia in 2015 and the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences (AAHMS) Outstanding Female Researcher Medal in 2022.

Sharon Lewin

Professor James McCluskey – Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), University of Melbourne

Professor James McCluskey is the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) at the University of Melbourne, appointed in March 2011 and led the development of the Doherty Institute. Prior to this he was the Pro Vice-Chancellor, Research Partnerships and Chair of Microbiology and Immunology. 
James trained in Perth as a physician and pathologist. He spent four years at the National Institutes of Health in the USA. On returning to Australia in 1987 he worked at Monash University until 1991 before joining Flinders University and the Australian Red Cross Blood Service.
 James joined the University of Melbourne in 1997 and has an international reputation for his research in basic and clinical immunology and is recognised for his leadership in the field of human leukocyte antigens (HLA) and the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). He has consulted for the Australian Red Cross for more than 20 years and is Editor-in-Chief of the international immunogenetics journal, Tissue Antigens. He is on the Board of Directors of the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, Florey Neuroscience Institutes, Bionics Institute and is Chair of the Nossal Institute Council and the Board of Nossal Institute Limited.

James McCluskey

Professor Jennifer Wilkinson-Berka - Head, School of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences

Professor Jennifer Wilkinson-Berka was appointed Head of the School of Biomedical Sciences in August 2020. In the previous year, Jennifer became Head of the Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience at the University of Melbourne following over 12 years in research and leadership roles at Monash University. These positions included Associate Dean Research (Central Clinical School) and Acting Head of the Department of Immunology and Pathology.

Jennifer has a longstanding research interest in the contribution of the renin-angiotensin aldosterone system to diabetic complications stemming from her time in the Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology (now Neuroscience) and Department of Physiology at the University of Melbourne. She currently heads a research laboratory in the Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience that investigates vasoactive factors and the immune system in neovascular retinopathies with a view to developing new therapeutics for clinical translation.

Professor Shelley Dolan – Chief Executive, Royal Melbourne Hospital

Professor Shelley Dolan joined the Royal Melbourne Hospital in August 2023 as Chief Executive. She  previously served as the Chief Executive of the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.

In her previous roles, Professor Dolan has successfully led large specialist tertiary hospitals in the UK, including as Chief Executive of Kings College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Deputy Chief Executive of the Royal Marsden Hospital.

Professor Dolan is a highly respected clinical and research leader with an impressive track record in health care, having successfully led major organisational and cultural change in Victoria and the United Kingdom (UK).

Key capabilities include executive and non-executive leadership across national and international bodies, strategy development, delivering excellence in quality and performance, overseeing large capital schemes and innovative research projects that require engagement with a broad range of stakeholders.

Shelley Dolan

Professor Jane Gunn

Professor Jane Gunn is a distinguished academic general practitioner and inaugural Chair of Primary Care Research at The University of Melbourne where she is also Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences. Her leadership has raised the profile and rigour of primary care research in Australia.

Jane’s trailblazing research into the complex interplay between mental and physical health led to her appointment as Inaugural Visiting Professor to the Scottish School of Primary Care (2009-2012) to be part of an international team investigating multiple long-term physical health problems (multimorbidity). Her input into that work began the focus on mental-physical multimorbidity and has led to influential publications that have influenced policy.

Jane Gunn

Dr Fergus Kerr - Chief Medical Officer, Royal Melbourne Hospital

Dr Fergus Kerr joined the Royal Melbourne Hospital as Chief Medical Officer in 2022 having been Group Director of Medical Services and Clinical Governance at Cabrini Health in Melbourne.

Fergus was appointed as an Emergency Physician and Toxicologist at Austin Health in 1997. Ten years later, in September 2007, he undertook a new challenge as Director of Emergency Medicine, and in 2011 he extended his leadership roles by taking up the Medical Directorship of the Medical and Emergency Clinical Service Unit.

More recently in a desire to develop his leadership capacity formally Fergus completed his Fellowship with the Royal Australasian College for Medical Administrators following which he took up the role as the Executive Director of Medical Services at Peninsula Health. In 2016 Fergus returned to Austin Health in an Executive position as the Chief Medical Officer. He has a strong interest in Toxicology, spending two years undertaking specialist training at the University of Pittsburgh, USA and was pivotal in establishing the Victorian Poisons Information Centre at Austin Health. He has previously been an examiner with the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine and up until January 2018 continued to practice clinically.

Professor Jo Douglass – Director of Research, Royal Melbourne Hospital

Professor Jo Douglass is the James Stewart Professor of Medicine and Head of the Department of Medicine in the Melbourne Medical School. She also holds the position of Director of Research at the Royal Melbourne Hospital.

She is a physician who trained in Respiratory Medicine and Allergy and Clinical Immunology and from 2012 to 2020 was head of The Department of Immunology and Allergy at the Royal Melbourne Hospital. She is an active clinician with clinical practice and teaching in asthma, especially severe asthma, allergic diseases, and Immune Deficiencies. Prof Douglass trained in Medicine at Monash University and undertook postgraduate training and education at Southampton and in London. She is an active researcher with current funded projects in severe asthma, especially Thunderstorm asthma and practice in the genomics of immune deficiencies alongside collaborators at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute. She is widely published, with over 100 original publications. She is a past president of the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy and is a Fellow of the Thoracic Society of Australia and New Zealand. She has served on numerous consumer groups including being current medical advisor to AusPIPs.

Jo Douglass