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New appointments at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO)

26 February 2014

The Australian Government has approved two appointments to ANSTO, the reappointment of ANSTO’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr Adrian (Adi) Paterson and the appointment of businessman Mr James McDowell as the Deputy Chair of the ANSTO Board.

Minister for Industry Ian Macfarlane said Dr Paterson’s reappointment is testament to his significant leadership skills.

“Dr Paterson has demonstrated strong leadership in the operations of Australia’s nuclear science infrastructure and its application to deliver high impact research outcomes and benefits for a range of key industries. I congratulate him on his reappointment to the role of CEO,” Mr Macfarlane said.

Minister Macfarlane also welcomed the appointment of Mr James McDowell to the ANSTO Board as Deputy Chair.

“This appointment is happening at an important time for ANSTO, with the construction of a new nuclear medicine facility, a world first that will put the organisation at the centre of the global fight against cancer and heart disease.

“Mr McDowell’s business background coupled with his knowledge of international marketing and joint ventures will support the development of emerging business opportunities and capitalise on the significant benefits the new facility will provide,” Mr Macfarlane said.

ANSTO Chairman Dr Paul Greenfield joined the Minister in congratulating Dr Paterson and Mr McDowell.

“This is a dynamic and exciting time for ANSTO and this is reflected in the overall contribution nuclear science and technology is now making across a range of key areas,” Dr Greenfield said.

 “I have great confidence that Dr Paterson is the right person to continue to deliver on the board’s vision and further strengthen partnerships across the local and international research sector, and through industry.”

Dr Greenfield said he expects that Mr McDowell’s experience will significantly contribute to what is already a high calibre board.

Media contact:  Minister's office 02 6277 7070

Additional Information

Dr Paterson commenced as CEO on 1 March 2009 and this announcement continues his appointment until 28 February 2017. During his time as CEO, Dr Paterson’s achievements have included securing commitment for the $168 million ANSTO Nuclear Medicine project which will ensure the on-going supply of life-saving nuclear medicines for all Australians. In the same period, he was recognised by the Sydney Division of Engineers Australia as their 2012 Professional Engineer of the Year.

Mr McDowell has most recently worked as the CEO of global company BAE Systems in Saudi Arabia, and brings with him a wealth of international experience in large-scale infrastructure projects in both the aerospace and defence business sectors.


ANSTO operates some of Australia’s most significant science infrastructure including the OPAL research reactor; a growing suite of neutron scattering instruments in the Bragg Institute; a world class accelerator facility; the National Imaging Facility Research Cyclotron and Australian Synchrotron.

ANSTO’s research facilities are used by Australian and international researchers to support key areas of health and environmental research and deliver innovation for industry.

ANSTO’s commercial businesses support a range of Australian industries and ensure that one in two Australians benefit from the nuclear medicines delivered to several hundred hospitals throughout Australia each week.