Did you know 70 per cent of pathology professionals in Australia are female? That’s more than 24,000 awesome Australian women working in collection centres and laboratories across the country, around the clock, to look after our health.

Here at Know Pathology Know Healthcare, we happen to think every single one of those women is incredible, but to celebrate International Women’s Day 2017, we’ve picked five women from the pathology world who have particularly inspired us over the last 12 months. Check it out and let us know on Facebook who else you think deserves a shout out.

Dr Debra Graves

The Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia is the foundation to ensuring Australian pathology services remain of the highest quality. From promoting the study and practice of pathology to providing guidance on best practice, there is not much in the world of pathology that the College doesn’t impact. And at the helm of the organization, overseeing all of this vital work is Dr Debra Graves. Dr Graves was appointed the first ever CEO of the College in 1999, and has held the position ever since. That’s nearly 20 years dedicated to protecting and improving pathology for the benefit of all Australians. And that’s awesome.


A/Prof Veronica Wiley

A/Prof Veronica Wiley currently heads up the NSW Newborn Screening Program. Each year the Program tests more than 90,000 babies and detects about 90 who need urgent assessment and treatment. She is one of the country’s leading experts in the field and continues to advocate for the best quality, most up to date newborn screening standards in Australia. Speaking to A/Prof Wiley last November about her dedication to giving babies the best possible start to life and to saving young lives was awe-inspiring, to say the least.


Shu Lam

In September 2016 Shu Lam hit the headlines for her research work into antimicrobial resistance. For the past three years, Lam has been researching her own microbiology approach to attacking drug-resistant infections. She heads up a team of six researchers, is often subject to 4am starts to check on her work, and most impressive of all? Lam is still studying as a PhD student at Melbourne University and is just 25 years old. As concerns over antibiotic resistant ‘superbugs’ continue to grow, we reckon Shu Lam is a name to remember.


Bridgette Veneris

Another name to look out for in the future, we first met Bridgette when we took her to visit the pathology team that saved her life with an urgent leukaemia diagnosis in 2015. Bridgette amazed everyone with her extensive scientific knowledge; it made a lot more sense when we learned that her dream is to be a Haematologist. In November last year she surprised everyone again when she won a trip to NASA for her innovative design for a sticking plaster dispenser. We’re thrilled at the thought that the future of pathology will be in the hands of young women like Bridgette.


Dr Ellen Maxwell

As the Medical Director and Director of Haematology at a busy Melbourne laboratory, Dr Maxwell often works 11 or 12 hour days and is on 24/7 call for up to two weeks a month. Yet despite all of this Dr Maxwell has always found the time to support the Know Pathology Know Healthcare initiative to raise awareness for pathology’s vital role, from showing local politicians around the lab to providing comments on the latest news stories. Basically, Dr Maxwell seems to fit three regular humans’ schedules into one day, all whilst being one of the nicest people in pathology.