Queensland cancer chief honoured with top award

Cancer Council Queensland CEO, Professor Jeff Dunn, has been appointed an Officer in the Order of Australia in recognition of distinguished service to cancer control.

The Queen’s Birthday Honours List acknowledges Professor Dunn’s contribution to the field of psycho-oncology through local and international promotion of innovative cancer care.

Fewer than 2,220 Australians have received the honour over the past 39 years and Jeff is one of only six Queenslanders to be appointed an Officer in the Order of Australia on today’s Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

Chairman of Cancer Council Queensland, Mr Graham Gibson QC, congratulated Professor Dunn AO on the appointment.

“Professor Dunn’s very considerable and distinguished service to cancer control, and to research, are but examples of his much broader dedication, contribution and service to cancer patients and the community,” Mr Gibson said.

“Professor Dunn has dedicated more than 25 years of service to cancer control research and support for patients, establishing Queensland’s first specialised cancer counselling service and a population-based research centre at Cancer Council Queensland.

“His academic achievements and career have been devoted to improving supportive care for cancer patients and improving patients’ survival outcomes and quality of life.”

Professor Dunn also serves as President of the Asian Pacific Organisation for Cancer Prevention, Secretary of the International Psycho-Oncology Society, and Chair of Reach to Recovery International. He is currently the only Australian among 24 experts worldwide nominated to serve as a Director of the Union for International Cancer Control.

“Professor Dunn’s international contributions have played a very significant role in advancing cancer care in Queensland, Australia, and, indeed, globally through extensive collaborations and partnerships with organisations such as the World Health Organisation and UICC,” Mr Gibson said.

“Building on evidence that at least one in three cancer patients experience clinically significant distress, he has helped to drive a global response to address the mental health burden of cancer and promote patient-centred care.”

Professor Dunn AO said the award was testimony of Cancer Council Queensland’s impact and importance to the community.

“Over the past 25 years working for Cancer Council Queensland, I have seen tremendous progress towards eliminating cancer as a life-threatening disease for future generations,” Professor Dunn said.

“Many more people are surviving a cancer diagnosis today, an achievement that has been accelerated by community action and engagement in cancer control initiatives.

“It is with deep appreciation that I recognise the contribution of Cancer Council Queensland’s volunteers, fundraisers, donors, employees, and the countless number of Queenslanders who so generously give their time and energy to help us deliver on our mission.

“I am honoured to be appointed an Officer in the Order of Australia and gratefully acknowledge the work of all those who serve as champions for a cancer free future.”