Prof Erica Fletcher reflects on her time as Research Committee Chair

After almost five years, the neuroscientist's term ends later this month – giving a voice to younger members of the School is among her personal highlights.

Professor Erica Fletcher says there is no job better than being a scientist where you can solve new problems every day.

The Department of Anatomy and Physiology Laboratory head has dedicated the past 15 years of her esteemed career to ophthalmological research.

From 2016 to 2020, Prof Fletcher has also been the inaugural Chair of the School’s Research Committee – a role she has developed in readiness for the next appointment to be made in the coming weeks.

“After the School of Biomedical Sciences was established in 2015, it has been a privilege to hold this position. I want to thank my fellow committee members for their contribution – it has been an honour working with you,” says Prof Fletcher.

“I am most proud of the work we’ve done to increase the profile of our postdocs, and giving younger members of the School a voice through the initiation and progress of the Early-Mid Career Researchers Association (EMCRA).”

EMCRA was established in 2016 to support level A and B postdoctoral researchers. The association provides opportunities for postdocs to network, and runs an annual inter-department collaborative seed-funding grant, called the EMCRA Collaborative Award.

Prof Fletcher’s own research into understanding the causes of retinal diseases has been widely acclaimed. In 2019, she won the Australian Neuroscience Society’s Nina Kondelos Prize, which recognises the contribution of leading female neuroscientists.

She was also awarded the 2019 H Barry Collin Research Medal, the 2016 Glen Fry Award and the 2006 Ivin M and Beatrice Borish Award from the American Academy of Optometry.