Past Award Finalists and Recipients
Australian of the Year
State Finalist Australian of the Year 2013
Professor John Boyages
Breast cancer specialist
In a career marked by clinical excellence and unwavering commitment to patient care, oncologist Professor John Boyages has pioneered innovative approaches in the detection and treatment of women with breast cancer. As the inaugural director of the Western Breast Screening Unit, he built the largest breast screening service in Australia treating over 60,000 women annually. As founder of the Westmead Breast Cancer Unit, John was responsible for the establishment of screening clinics in the lingerie departments of Myer stores. He also transformed the capacity of four public hospitals to enable the transmission of digital images to a central diagnostic centre within seconds after a mammogram. Beginning his career at Westmead as a radiation oncologist, his guiding vision has been achieved – to create a multi-disciplinary, specialist team integrating screening, diagnosis, treatment and follow-up all in one location. Extensive support services for patients and their families including counselling, education, gentle exercise and the Mates group for partners are also offered. His work and leadership have contributed in reducing the mortality rate for breast cancer in Western Sydney by 35 per cent.