Professor Emeritus James Miln Thomson



Mr Chancellor, 

The University from time to time recognises exceptional quality of service among its own staff­members by the conferral of an honorary degree. On this occasion it is my pleasure to present Professor James Thomson, whose service has been valuable and varied. 

After a career in the Division of Fisheries and Oceanography of CSIRO and, more briefly, as Scientific Director of Marineland at Manly, Jim Thomson came to the University in 1965 as a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Zoology. 

Promoted to Readerin 1967 and appoirited as a Professor of Zoology in the f e,llowing year, he served two terms as head of the department and one term as Dean of the Faculty of Science. He also served the Academic Board by his chairmanship or membership of many committees, including the Standing Commiuee. His rare combination of scholarship and administration was recognised by his appointment in 112.SA as the first Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Biological Sciences). In that position he chaired two committees that recommended substantial changes to the academic structure, research facilities, and clinical facilities of the Faculty of Veterinary Science. 
When the University College of the Northern Territory needed a founding Warden in 1986, Jim Thomson was seen to be the ideal appointee. His research and recreational interest in the fishes of Australia-the subject of many of his numerous publications-; his administrative skills; and the personal touch that enables him to provide a congenial environment for people to work together were all called into play in this arduous assignment. 

Jim Thomson has never done just the designated job. He has always been willing to serve on institutions such as the Board of Trustees of the Queensland Museum, the council of the Australian Institute of Marine Sciences, the Australian National Committee on Oceanography, and the Commonwealth/Queensland Committee of Enquiry into the Crown-of-thorns Starfish. His emi­nence as a scientist has been recognised by his presidency of the Australian Marine Sciences Association and the Royal Society of Queensland. 

Mr Chancellor, for his services to The University of Queensland, the advances he has made to scientific knowledge, his assistance to Commonwealth and State Government advisory bodies, and his many valuable contributions, initially to the intellectual and organizational life of the University College of the Northern Territory and then to the Northern Territory University, I present to you Professor James Miln Thomson, Member of the Order of Australia; Master of Science, Doctor of Science (University of Western Australia); Chartered Biologist; Fellow of the Institute of Biology, United Kingdom; Fellow of the Australian Institute of Biology; Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management, for the conferral of the degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa, to which he has been admitted by the Senate of the University. 



Doctor of Science honoris causa