Philanthropist Brian Sherman AM, honoured with Australian Museum award for contribution to scientific research
Sydney, 4 August, 2022: The 2022 Australian Museum Research Institute (AMRI) Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Brian Sherman AM at a ceremony at the Australian Museum on Tuesday night. The Award is in recognition of Brian’s significant contribution to animal welfare and to the advancement of science and scientific research.
Director and CEO of the Australian Museum, Kim McKay AO, said it is important for science and scientists be recognised in this way and to have a strong voice so that their work continues to be supported and trusted by the community and government.
Brian Sherman was President of the Australian Museum Trust from 2001 to 2009 and made a remarkable impact on the scientific operations of the Australian Museum. Director and CEO of the Australian Museum, Kim McKay AO
“Brian ensured the safety and protection of the Australian Museum’s irreplaceable scientific collections by initiating the building of the Collections and Research facility, which opened in 2008,” McKay said.
Former AMRI Lifetime Achievement Award winner and the AM’s Distinguished Fellow in Climate Change, Professor Tim Flannery said that Brian Sherman’s leadership and ethics brought a new perspective to the Australian Museum’s operations.
“Brian’s involvement in animal rights was ahead of its time and he brought a contemporary view to the way the AM managed animal specimens,” Professor Tim Flannery said.
Australian Museum Trustee and Pro Vice-Chancellor, Global Engagement, University of Sydney, Professor Kathy Belov AO, said that during his time as President of the AM Trust, Brian raised the profile of the Australian Museum
“Not only did he oversee 28 major exhibitions and the acquisition of countless valuable specimens and objects, but most significantly, he also guided the development and delivery of a new Collections and Research Building, now known as the Australian Museum Research Institute,” Belov said.
“These strong foundations upgraded the AM’s scientific research facilities and vastly improved storage facilities of millions of specimens which have enabled the AM to become a world leading scientific research institution,” Belov said
McKay added that Brian’s support of the AM and its vision for the future has continued, and in 2020 the Sherman Foundation granted a $1 million dollar gift towards the AM’s major renovation, Project Discover.
“Brian, together with his wife Gene, has always been a champion for ensuring that science is made accessible to all. It is a fitting tribute that the entrance to the Australia Museum - a space that invites and welcomes all visitors to engage with science and natural history, is now called the Brian Sherman Crystal Hall,” McKay said.
Accepting the Award on behalf of her farther, Ondine Sherman said her father loved being involved in the Australian Museum.
“Growing up, we spent a lot of our time at the Australian Museum. Dad is extremely honoured to receive this award,” Ms Sherman said.
Established in 2014, the AMRI Lifetime Achievement Award recognises eminent researchers and others who have made outstanding contributions to advancing public knowledge and understanding of science. Previous recipients of the AMRI Lifetime Achievement Award have included Mr Robyn Williams AM, Professor Tim Flannery, Professor Frank Talbot AM, the 1971 Lord Howe Island Environmental Survey Group, Catherine Livingstone AO and Professor Lesley Hughes.
About Brian Sherman
An inspirational leader, Mr Sherman was President of the Australian Museum Trust from 2001 to 2009 and the founding Chairperson of both the Australian Museum Foundation and the President’s Circle of donors, which are vital to enabling the Australian Museum to deliver its vision to be a leading voice for the richness of life, the Earth and culture in Australia and the Pacific.
Mr Sherman was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in 2004 for service to the community as a benefactor to a range of arts, education, and sporting organisations, and to business and commerce. In 2020, on behalf of the NSW Government and the Australian Museum Trust, Mr Sherman was made Governor Emeritus in recognition of his contribution to the Australian Museum.
About the Australian Museum
The Australian Museum (AM) was founded in 1827 and is the nation’s first museum. It is internationally recognised as a natural science and culture institution focused on Australia and the Pacific. The AM’s mission is to ignite wonder, inspire debate and drive change. The AM’s vision is to be a leading voice for the richness of life, the Earth and culture in Australia and the Pacific. The AM commits to transforming the conversation around climate change, the environment and wildlife conservation; to being a strong advocate for First Nations cultures; and to continuing to develop world-leading science, collections, exhibitions and education programs. With 22 million objects and specimens and the Australian Museum Research Institute (AMRI), the AM is not only a dynamic source of reliable scientific information on some of the most pressing environmental and social challenges facing our region, but also an important site of cultural exchange and learning.
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