Past Fulbright scholars

The Australian – American Fulbright program is a two way scheme, supporting exchange of both Australian and American scholars to visit the other’s country.

Following are the past Fulbright Scholars

Dr Renee Bartolo - Senior Scholars

Renee Bartolo

Home Institution
Environmental Research Institute of the Supervising Scientist, Department of the Environment and Energy
Host InstitutionNational UAS Project Office, United States Geological Survey
Award NameFulbright Future Scholarship Funded by The Kinghorn Foundation
DisciplineEnvironmental Assessment
Award Year2019

Renee is a Principal Research Scientist with the Supervising Scientist Branch, Department of the Environment and Energy, and is currently the Team Leader of the Ecosystem Restoration and Landform Group. The Supervising Scientist Branch is responsible for providing independent science advice on the rehabilitation of Ranger Uranium Mine, including the development of environmental standards and monitoring programs. Renee has established a leading practice drone program to undertake these activities.

Renee will use her Fulbright Scholarship to develop guidelines for the effective use of drones in environmental assessment and monitoring in collaboration with the National Unmanned Aerial System Project Office, United States Geological Survey, with a view to establish a long-term exchange of capabilities and knowledge. This project aims to address the gap between research and development in the application of drones and their operational use in measuring and monitoring the environment, particularly in government agencies.

Dr Benedict Scambary - Postdoctoral Scholars

Benedict Scambary

Home Institution 
Aboriginal Areas Protection Authority
Host Institution 
Columbia University
Award Name   
Fulbright Postdoctoral Scholarship
Indigenous Land Rights
Award Year2019

Ben is an anthropologist with nearly 30 years’ experience working with Aboriginal people in Australia’s Northern Territory. He has an extensive background in land claims, native title claims, cultural heritage protection, dispute mediation and agreement making, particularly in the context of mining and resource development in Australia’s remote north. Ben is currently the Chief Executive Officer of the Aboriginal Areas Protection Authority, and is responsible for the protection of sacred sites in the Northern Territory.

Ben will use his Fulbright scholarship to continue his research on livelihoods, aspirations, identity, and modes of alternate economic engagement in the context of treaties between American First Nations and the state with a focus on natural resource development projects.  He will be based in the Anthropology Department at Columbia University in New York. He intends to forge research and collaboration opportunities as the Northern Territory embarks on the negotiation of a Treaty.

Professor James A. Smith - Senior Scholars

James A.Smith

Home Institution
Menzies School of Health Research
Host InstitutionGender and Health Research Lab, School of Social Work, University of Michigan /Center for Research on Men’s Health, Office of the Vice Provost for Research, Vanderbilt University
Award NameFulbright Northern Territory Scholarship Funded by the Northern Territory Government, Charles Darwin University and Blackboard Ltd.
DisciplinePublic Health.
Award Year2019

James is a Father Frank Flynn Fellow at Menzies School of Health Research, and holds honorary academic appointments at the University of Sydney, Curtin University, Charles Darwin University and the University of Saskatchewan. His applied research interests have spanned alcohol harm minimisation, Indigenous health/education, health literacy, and men’s health. James is a Fellow of the Australian Health Promotion Association, current Editor-in-Chief of the Health Promotion Journal of Australia, and an Editorial Advisory Board member of the International Journal of Men’s Social and Community Health.

James’ Fulbright project will focus on synthesising global evidence to improve health promotion strategies aimed at reducing health inequities among young black men. This will involve learning from recent achievements in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander male health in Australia, and comparing these with strategies adopted in African-American and Native American men’s health contexts in the U.S. This work will enhance international men’s health policy discourses.


Dr Anna Ralph - Senior Scholar – Fulbright NT Scholarship Recipient 2018

Anna Ralph

Home Institution
Menzies School of Health Research
Host InstitutionSchool of Medicine, University of California San Francisco
Award NameFulbright Northern Territory Scholar
Award Year2018

Anna is Associate Professor at the Global and Tropical Health division at Menzies School of Heath Research, a specialist in Infectious Diseases at Royal Darwin Hospital, and Clinical Director of Rheumatic Heart Disease Australia. Anna’s research goals are to improve outcomes for people with diseases of disadvantage, focusing on tuberculosis and rheumatic fever. Her research has led to health system strengthening for better tuberculosis control in eastern Indonesia; new knowledge on host responses to tuberculosis infection; research capacity building in Australian Aboriginal communities; and improved understanding of the diagnosis and management of rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease.

This opportunity will allow Anna to draw on world-class implementation research skills at UCSF to develop a comprehensive strategy for the elimination of rheumatic heart disease as a public health problem. Skills gained will also strengthen the Menzies tuberculosis research program, and will build important valuable ties.

David Crook  - Fulbright Professional Scholar

David Crook

Home Institution 
Research Institute for the Environment and Livelihoods, Charles Darwin University
Host Institution 
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Award Name   
Fulbright Professional Scholarship
Fisheries Research
Award Year2018

David is a Principal Research Fellow at the Research Institute for the Environment and Livelihoods at Charles Darwin University in Darwin. He has more than 20 years of experience in fish ecology research, primarily focussing on the significance of fish migration for ecosystem connectivity, aquatic food web structure and function, threatened species conservation and sustainable fishery management.

David will use his Fulbright scholarship to undertake collaborative research at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute in Massachusetts and Oregon State University and the U.S. Forest Service in Corvallis, Oregon. Analyses of fish otoliths (earstones) will be used to quantify the transport of assimilated energy and nutrients across ecosystem boundaries by migratory fish, using barramundi from tropical Australia and Pacific salmon from the temperate USA as case studies. The project will help support sustainable fishery management and provides an opportunity for ongoing collaboration among fisheries scientists in Australia and the U.S.

Amy Dennison - Fulbright Anne Wexler Scholarship

Amy Dennison

Home Institution
Northern Territory Government
Host InstitutionTBC
Award NameFulbright Anne Wexler Scholarship in Public Policy
DisciplinePublic Policy
Award Year2018

Amy works for the Northern Territory Government in energy and environment policy. She is interested in how government and industry can ensure the ecologically sustainable development of non-renewable resources. Amy has a Bachelor of Environmental Engineering with first class Honours and the University Medal and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of New South Wales. She placed first and received the Dean’s Medal for her Master of Laws in Mineral Law and Policy from the University of Dundee in the UK. Amy has worked as an environmental engineer in India, a corporate lawyer in Sydney and New York, and with traditional Aboriginal owners as land rights and native title lawyer in the Northern Territory.

Amy will use the Fulbright Scholarship to undertake a mid-career Masters of Public Affairs at a leading Public Policy school in the United States. Her long-term goal is to lead the development of policies and laws that will ensure the sustainable development of energy and resource projects in Australia.

Professor Timothy A. Carey - 2017 Fulbright Senior Scholar

Timothy A Carey

Home Institution
Flinders University
Host InstitutionCenter for Behavioural Health Innovation, Antioch University New England
Award NameFulbright Northern Territory Senior Scholarship
DisciplineClinical Psychology
Award Year2017

Tim is Director of the Centre for Remote Health in Alice Springs. He is a clinical psychologist researcher and clinician and is particularly interested in improving patients’ control in health care settings in terms of the way in which services are designed and delivered, as well as how patients are able to access these services. Patient control is especially important in remote settings where access to services is compromised and health outcomes lag unacceptably behind the health enjoyed by urban citizens.

Tim will use his time on the Fulbright Scholarship to develop research training for practicing health professionals in conjunction with colleagues at the Center for Behavioural Health Innovation at Antioch University so that health professionals in remote and other underserved communities can evaluate and improve the programs and services they offer for the benefit of the patients they serve.

On 23 May Charles Darwin University hosted a reception in honour of Professor Tim Carey.

 2017 Fulbright NT Scholar Reception hosted by Charles Darwin University : L-R Ms Maryanne McKaige Fulbright NT Secretary, Dr Kevin Gillan NT Department of Education, Dr Pablo Jimenez Australian American Fulbright Commission, Professor Timothy Carey Fulbright NT Senior Scholar, Professor Sue Carthew CDU Provost, Professor Yolanda Moses Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Cultural Competence, Ms Tara Hawley Australian American Fulbright Commission

Since 2009 the NT has celebrated nine outstanding Fulbright NT Scholarship recipients and three American Fulbright scholars.

2016 - Professor Ruth Wallace

Ruth Wallace

Home Institution: Charles Darwin University
Host Institution: Kansas State University
Award Name: Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Agriculture and Life Sciences, Sponsored by Kansas State University
Discipline: Agricultural Science (Biosecurity)
Award Year: 2016

Ruth Wallace is the Director of the Northern Institute, the social and policy research institute at Charles Darwin University. Her research interests relate to the links between identity, marginalised learners and the development of effective learning and workforce development pathways. Her work is situated in regional and remote areas of northern Australia, and predominantly undertaken with Aboriginal people in remote and regional areas. Her critical thinking is driven by informed debate on the multifaceted issues that present in the unique political and geographic frontiers of northern Australia. Professor Wallace has extended this work to examine approaches to enterprise development in regional and remote areas of Eastern Indonesia. Her work incorporates areas of economic and social change through working with Indigenous land and sea managers undertaking key biosecurity and economic development roles. The Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Agriculture and Life Sciences Scholarship will allow Professor Wallace the opportunity to go beyond these northern borders to develop distinguished professional networks with a view to developing future collaborations.

Ruth was awarded a Doctor of Philosophy by Charles Darwin University in 2011. Her research focused on marginalized learners’ identities and the intersections with educational systems in regional areas. Ruth’s academic career started when she was awarded at Bachelor of Education (Primary) at the Queensland University of Technology, and she has gone on to postgraduate studies in Adult Education, Research Management and Mathematics. Ruth holds key leadership roles nationally and in northern Australia to improve research integration and utilization, particularly in remote areas. She leads the Workforce Development research theme and focuses on collaborative approaches with community, governments and industry that are sustainable and scalable. Ruth is committed to utilizing research’s potential to improve social, cultural and economic outcomes for marginalized people and works closely with Aboriginal researchers and community groups in regional and remote areas to support engaged and effective policy and enterprise development systems.

The Biosecurity Policy at the Margins Project is a major opportunity to build on research in northern Australia and focus on engaging regional and marginalized communities in biosecurity identification and response systems, at a national and local scale. Professor Wallace will work with researchers at the Research and Extension Division at Kansas State University to understand and articulate the ways that remote communities can contribute to, and partner in, the effective delivery of plant biosecurity surveillance through engaging a wide range of decision makers and knowledge systems. The project will contribute to understanding the processes that underpin priorities and decision making in policy networks and policy implementation.

2016 - Mr Hichem Demortier

Hichem Demortier

Home Institution: National Critical Care and Trauma Response Centre
Host Institution: Harvard Humanitarian Initiative
Award Name: Fulbright Professional Scholarship in Non-Profit Leadership, Sponsored by the Origin Foundation and Supported by the Australian Scholarships Foundation
Discipline: Humanitarian Aid
Award Year: 2016

Hichem is currently Director of Strategy and Corporate Services at the National Critical Care and Trauma Response Centre (NCCTRC), the government agency responsible for Australia’s health emergency response.

As the child of a French public servant and an Algerian Muslim mother who worked as a teacher and social worker, Hichem has developed a strong social conscience and a belief that respect and curiosity can reconcile people.

After his Masters in Management from the Ecole Superieure de Commerce de Paris (ESCP- Europe), Hichem worked in audit and mergers and acquisitions, before shifting to the not-for-profit sector in 2000. He first worked for the French Development Agency for five years, and then joined Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) from 2004 to 2006. During this period, he coordinated and evaluated development and emergency projects in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Hichem then returned to France as Deputy Director of a large social enterprise. In 2009, he came to Australia and continued his not-for-profit journey in structures supporting Indigenous health and employment, before joining the Global and Tropical Health division of Menzies School of Health Research.

In addition to his current role with the NCCTRC, Hichem is also a director of the board of MSF Australia, a representative of MSF Australia on several international platforms, and contributes to impact investment projects in France.

Hichem will use his Fulbright not-for-profit scholarship to spend four months at Harvard University and will establish a formal partnership between the NCCTRC and the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative. This partnership, as well as the existing partnership with the World Health Organisation, will position the NCCTRC and Northern Australia as the regional centre for health emergency response in the Asia-Pacific region.

Hichem will use his time at Harvard University to create new professional networks in the humanitarian field, to consolidate his humanitarian expertise and will study leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School.

2016 - Ms Monique Hurley

Monique Hurley

Home Institution: North Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency
Host Institution: New York University (TBC)
Award Name: Fulbright Northern Territory Postgraduate Scholarship
Discipline: Law
Award Year: 2016

Monique holds a Bachelor of Laws (First class honours) and Bachelor of Arts (Politics) from Monash University.  During her university studies, Monique interned at the Parliament of Victoria, the Castan Centre for Human Rights Law and Justice Connect (formerly the Public Interest Law Clearing House). Monique went on complete her Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice with the College of Law and was admitted to practice in December 2012.  She worked for two years as a lawyer at Clayton Utz, working across the firm’s corporate, litigation and administrative law practices.  She went on to spend one year working as an Associate to the Honourable Justice Sloss at the Supreme Court of Victoria.  Monique has volunteered as a lawyer with the Homeless Person’s Legal Clinic, Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, Mental Health Legal Centre and Prahran Citizen’s Advice Bureau.  She has also co-authored a report on the methodology used by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection to assess the age of minors in immigration detention, which was published by leading civil liberties organization, Liberty Victoria, in September 2015.  Monique currently works as a solicitor for the North Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency in Katherine where she travels to remote communities to provide civil law advice and representation to Aboriginal clients.  Monique advises clients on a diverse range of areas, including employment and discrimination matters, the applicability of statutory compensation schemes, complaints against the police and health care complaints.  She also represents clients in adult guardianship, child protection and alcohol mandatory treatment proceedings.  Outside of work, Monique is an avid supporter of the Geelong Football Club and enjoys traveling, reading and spending time with family and friends.

For her Fulbright Postgraduate Scholarship, Monique hopes to study a Masters of Law (LLM) in America. She would like to build on her previous studies and practical legal experience by focusing her overseas LLM studies on international and human rights law.  Monique would like to learn from the American and international experience at a leading university to obtain a more comprehensive understanding of how the law can be used as a mechanism to help empower disadvantaged individuals and groups of people.

2015 - Dr Robert Marshall

Dr Robert MarshallDr Robert Marshall is a doctor at the Royal Darwin Hospital who plans to use his Fulbright Scholarship to further his medical training and gain specialist knowedge in the field of health policy. This includes public health programs and services administered and delivered by governments and other providers to improve health outcomes within society and reduce inequity.

Dr Marshall will undertake a Masters program in public health policy in the USA and intends to return to Australia to contribute to better solutions for health delivery and administration, particuarly as they relate to Indigenous health. In the long term Dr Marshall’s goal is to work in international research to improve health care globally.

2014 - Professor Peter Kell

Professor Peter KellProfessor Peter Kell was awarded the Fulbright NT Scholarship for 2014 to pursue his project Reaching out to the Globe: Internationalising Masters Postgraduate Learning in Education. During his time at University of Illinois from late 2014, Profesor Kell, who is currently Head of School of Education at Charles Darwin University, will investigate how professional and postgraduate programs in the Northern Territory can be internationalised to enable the learning experience of students in Education to develop a global dimension.

Professor Kell's project will address key questions in development of a Master of Education (International) program, in particular how an international consortium of Higher Education providers should be organised and governed, what processes and structures are appropriate for transnational online postgraduate teaching and learning and how new technologies of learning can promote and facilitate international professional engagement.

2013 - Dr Rod Kennett

Dr Rod KennettA researcher with the North Australian Indigenous Land and Sea Management Alliance, Dr Rod Kennett was hosted for six months by The Nature Conservancy based in Anchorage Alaska for his Fulbright NT Scholarship.

His work to study Indigenous conservation-based livelihoods involved engagement with a wide range of organisations and individuals to  understand the key conservation and resource management issues and the geographical and historical context of Alaska, gain an understanding of the scope and scale of Indigenous and non-Indigenous conservation and management issues in Alaska and share knowledge gained through his own experience in Indigenous natural and cultural resource management in Australia. Dr Kennett also established productive partnerships with individuals and organisations to explore opportunities for ongoing collaboration in Indigenous livelihood research.

2012 - Dr Claire Gordon

Dr Claire GordonDr Claire Gordon is an Infectious Diseases Registrar at the Royal Darwin Hospital. In 2012 Dr Gordon undertook research and a Master of Science in Epidemiology at Columbia University New York as part of her Fulbright NT Scholarship. Dr Gordon worked on two research projects, one on immune factors involved in cytomegalovirus reactivation in organ transplant recipients and the other on pathogen discovery in organ transplants.

Building on her virology and viral immunity research and observation in clinical practice, Dr Gordon expanded her expertise through her Fulbright studies and research to be at the forefront of technological advances in her field, with great potential benefits for management of organ transplants in the future. 

2012 - Professor Michael Douglas

Professor Michael DouglasProfessor Michael Douglas was one of two recipients of the Fulbright Northern Territory Scholarship for 2012. A professor at Charles Darwin University's Research Institute for Environment and Livelihoods (RIEL), Professor Douglas used his Fulbright Scholarship to collaborate with researchers at the University of Maryland and Oregon State University to establish a shared understanding of integrated catchment management between Australia and the United States as a basis for developing a new research framework for river and coastal management in northern Australia.

With the many threats to the North Australian river systems such as weeds, feral animals and land degradation, and demands from increasing development, informed river and coastal management will be essential to ensure sustainable use. Professor Douglas' work will help to solve critical threats to Australia's tropical aquatic ecosystems.

2011 - Dr Steven Tong

Dr Steven TongDr Stephen Tong was awarded the inaugural Fulbright NT Scholarship for 2011 to further his ground breaking research into the super-bug, golden staph. A Charles Darwin University PhD graduate and now Research Fellow with CDU's Menzies School of Health Research, Dr Tong spent seven months at the Duke University Medical Center in North Carolina, one of the world's leading centres for staphylococcal research, to examine the relationship between golden staph and infection of the lining of the heart muscle. Dr Tong also assessed the virulence of a certain strain of golden staph to assist with management of infections from this bacterium. 

Dr Tong's work in the USA will have benefits both for the medical profession generally and for the Top End in particular, where Menzies is establishing an internationally and nationally recognised role in golden staph research

2013 - Katherine Lacksen

Katherine LacksenMs Katherine Lacksen spent 2013 at Charles Darwin University working with Fulbright alumnus Professor Michael Douglas (2012 Fulbright Australian Scholar) on research into protecting tropical rivers from nutrient pollution.

Ms Lacksen’s research focused on the Daly River in the Northern Territory, which is renowned for its barramundi fisheries and conservation values, but it is also the focus of increasing agricultural development. Through her research Ms Lacksen’s sought to contribute to knowledge on the potential effects of nutrient pollution from agricultural development in northern Australia on tropical rivers to inform sustainable development.

2012 - Israel Del Toro

Israel Del Toro“To better understand and predict the consequences of global environmental change on biodiversity, we must first understand the current state of natural communities and how community composition can change across broad geographic gradients, including latitude and elevation.”

In 2012 Israel Del Toro, a PhD candidate at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and recipient of a CSIRO sponsored Fulbright Postgraduate Scholarship, spent 12 months working with Dr Alan Andersen at CSIRO’s Tropical Ecosystems Research Centre in Darwin Northern Territory exploring the role of ants as environmental indicators of climate change.

Global climate change threatens ecological communities by shifting species distributions and altering how species assemble into communities. Ants are key functional members of terrestrial ecosystems, particularly in Australia, and account for much of the diversity on the planet. Mr del Toro’s research looked at how assemblages of ants vary along environmental gradients in the seasonal tropics of Northern Australia, and how dominant and abundant species may respond to climate change. He said that ants are excellent model organisms because their species diversity is high and generally well understood, they are sensitive to environmental stressors, and are widely used as indicators of environmental change.

2009 - Professor Tim Berra

Professor Tim BerraTim Berra, Professor Emeritus in the Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology at Ohio State University in the USA, and recipient of three Fulbright Awards to Australia (1969, 1979 and 2009), is also a Professorial Fellow at Charles Darwin University.

His third and most recent Fulbright award was in 2009 as a Fulbright Senior Specialist, when he visited Charles Darwin University as a keynote speaker at the Charles Darwin Symposium commemorating the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin.

An ichthyologist (fish scientist), Professor Berra is also recognised as a leading scholar of Charles Darwin the man. He has visited CDU and the NT on a number of occasions since 2001, other than for his Fulbright award, where he has furthered his research on a unique and elusive species the Nurseryfish. The males of this species carry their eggs on a hook on their head.

Professor Berra was quoted in the Fulbright Commission’s 65th Anniversary booklet as saying “I owe my career to the Fulbright program. The exchange absolutely fosters mutual understanding between US and Australia. It shows that the way things are done in the US is not the only way of doing things. It makes one realize that different is not inferior, and sometimes different is superior.”