The Power List 2020 – Australia
Professor of Forensic and Analytical Chemistry, Curtin University, Australia
Reason for pursuing analytical science: When I was in high school I knew I wanted to work in science, but specifically in an applied field. I looked at a number of different degree courses, and it was my initial visit to the analytical chemistry research labs at the University of Hull that caught my imagination.
Greatest inspiration: The late Professor Jay Siegel, who was a well-known figure in forensic science. Jay was a key mentor for me throughout my career, and was an inspiration not only for his passion for his field, but also the care he showed for the wellbeing and careers of his students and colleagues.
Future of the field: The increasing use of advanced analytical instrumentation to probe the chemistry of latent fingermarks will lead to a better understanding, and enhanced recovery and use of this important form of forensic evidence.
Dinner party guest: Though I hope that my research will have long-term impact, I suspect my lasting influence will be through my teaching and it would be wonderful to sit down and talk shop with my late grandfather who was a high school teacher for over 40 years.
Advice to younger self: Pay more attention in statistics classes at high school! (It would have saved me some pain in later years.)