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14 Jul 2020

World-leading Malaysian HIV researcher Adeeba Kamarulzaman new IAS President

For the first time in its history, the International AIDS Society (IAS) has appointed an Asian President in Professor Adeeba Kamarulzaman of Malaysia, and has also announced the Governing Council is majority female.

The announcement was made at the closing ceremony of the virtual AIDS 2020 conference, and included the appointment of Doherty Institute Director, Professor Sharon Lewin as President-elect.

The IAS  is the peak international organisation representing more than 10,000 health professionals and community working in HIV.

Professor Kamarulzaman graduated from Monash University and is currently Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Malaya in her native Malaysia, an Adjunct Associate Professor at Yale University, USA.

She established the Infectious Diseases Unit at the University of Malaya Medical Centre and, in 2008, the Centre of Excellence for Research in AIDS (CERiA) at the same university.

Professor Lewin said Adeeba has many friends, colleagues and collaborators in Melbourne and she will do an incredible job leading the IAS for the next two years.

“Adeeba has been at the forefront of harm reduction for people who inject drugs in Malaysia and a leader in HIV research for many years,” Professor Lewin said.

The IAS also announced nine newly elected and three re-elected members to its Governing Council, including Professor Andrew Grulich from the Kirby Institute at the University of New South Wales.

Professor Kamarulzaman said the new members added great diversity of skills and experiences.

“They will be pivotal in steering IAS into the future and dealing with a fast-changing scientific, social and political landscape. I am particularly happy to announce that, for the first time, our Governing Council is majority female with 13 women and 12 men,” she said.

The Governing Council determines strategy and policy direction for IAS to ensure that the organisation fulfils its mission of leading collective action on every front of the global HIV response.