Professor Michael McKinley was our keynote speaker at the March RACV luncheon. 

Michael matriculated from the College in 1964 and had a distinguished career in medical research. He completed an Honours Degree in Science at the University of Melbourne. He arrived at The Florey in 1969 with a plan to be a science teacher but this quickly changed and proved the beginning of a lifetime devoted to medical research. Michael completed a Masters Degree in Science and went on to complete a PhD.

Michael presented a fascinating history of The Florey including the role of pioneering scientists like Professor Derek (Dick) Denton, the struggles and successes in accessing funding, the extraordinary generosity of men like Ken Myers and Ian Potter, and the key people who knocked on doors to access these endowments. He outlined the journey from the Howard Florey Laboratories of Experimental Physiology and Medicine to the amalgamation of the Mental Health Research Institute, the National Stroke Research Institute, and the Brain Research Institute to become the Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health. This included a huge growth in staff from 30 in 1969 to over 300 today.

Michael’s primary research has revolved around brain chemistry with recent research focusing on how the brain ‘talks to’ the body’s immune system.

Pat Mount (1963) again did a great job as our Master of Ceremonies and I was able to report on the Old Paradians' Association and Parade College Foundation. College Business Manager Paul Harris (1997) was also in attendance. Thank you again to Keith Sharkie for organising another successful luncheon.