Media Release

Newsroom Releases 2012 April Gadek heads JCU Academic Board

13/04/2012
Gadek heads Academic Board
JCU has appointed Professor Paul Gadek to a further term as chairperson of its Academic Board.

James Cook University has appointed Professor Paul Gadek to a further term as chairperson of its Academic Board.

JCU Chancellor Lt Gen John Grey said that the chairperson’s position was a key one in the operations of the University.

“The Chairperson of Academic Board fulfils an extremely important academic leadership role across all academic areas of JCU’s operations,” the Chancellor said.

“The chairperson is an ex-officio member of both JCU’s Council and the Vice Chancellor’s Advisory Committee, but more particularly leads the principal advisory body on all matters relating to academic policies and activities at the University.”

The University Council – the governing body of the University – had undertaken a process to appoint a chairperson and at last night’s meeting (Thursday April 12) elected Professor Gadek after listening to advice from members of the Academic Board and the Vice Chancellor.

Professor Gadek was first appointed chairperson in 2007, when it was a part-time position.

For the past six months he has acted as the University’s Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic and the Deputy chair of the Board, Associate Professor Frances Quirk, has acted as chairperson.

Professor Gadek’s new term will be for three years beginning at the end of May

His academic background is in plant biology, plant biotechnology, management of pure and applied competitively funded and consultancy projects, and fungal and plant pathogen research.

He established a Centre within JCU (Centre for Tropical Agri-Tech Research, CTAR) that links plant bioindustry and biotechnology research, sustainable agricultural practice, and economic and educational capacity building expertise within JCU pertaining to tropical regional agri- and bioindustries.

Professor Gadek, who is based at JCU’s Cairns campus, has played a leading role in the development of the Australian Tropical Forest Institute complex and the establishment of the Australian Tropical Herbarium (ATH), and is currently a JCU representative on the ATH Board.

He is on the Steering Committee established to undertake an assessment of the feasibility of establishing a business incubator in the Cairns region; a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee and Project Reference Group, Phytophthora best practice; and Chair of the Scientific Advisory Committee, Wet Tropics Management Authority (WTMA).

Professor Gadek is also a member of several regional development organisations including Troplinks, ATEC, DEEDI’s Mentoring for Growth, and Sustainable FNQ.

The Academic Board role is to:

  • advise the JCU Council about teaching, scholarship and research matters concerning the University;
  • formulate proposals for the academic policies of the University;
  • monitor the academic activities of the University’s faculties ;and
  • promote and encourage scholarship and research at the University.

Issued: April 13, 2012

Media enquiries: Jim O’Brien 07 4781 4822