ANZACA Life Members

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Life members should have made a significant contribution to ANZACA or the objectives of the Association. Nominations for life membership may be submitted on an ad hoc basis to the Secretary and will be voted on by Council and ratified at an Annual General Meeting.



A/Prof Chris Briggs

Dr Christopher A. Briggs (Life membership awarded 2018)
Dip Ed (Exeter) BSc, MS, PhD (Oregon)


After completing his PhD, Chris taught briefly at the University of Oregon and in 1975 was appointed to a lecturing position at the University of Melbourne; being promoted to Associate Professor in 2004. He was initially a member of staff of the Department of Human Movement Studies, transferred to the Department of Anatomy in 1981 and retired from the Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience in 2017.

Major areas of research and scholarship

Chris’ key interest is in musculoskeletal structure and function and he is one of four principal authors in the development of Anatomedia, a modular multimedia-based project for teaching and learning anatomy. During his University career Chris supervised several PhD and MSc candidates as well as Honours and Masters Preliminary students. Chris held a sessional appointment in forensic anthropology at the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine and was Honorary Associate Professor in the Department of Forensic Medicine at Monash University. His publications extend across multiple fields, including medical education, anatomy and forensic anthropology/pathology. He was involved in teaching anatomy to a broad range of undergraduate students in Science, Biomedicine, Dentistry and Physiotherapy, and also taught in the Medical program. From 2011-2017 Chris coordinated the Graduate Diploma in Surgical Anatomy at Melbourne.

He was guest lecturer at La Trobe University, RMIT University, the University of Otago and James Cook University as well as external examiner at several institutions both in Australia and overseas. Chris was Vice President of ANZACA from 2008-10 and President from 2010-12 inclusive, and presented at many of the annual conferences.

Current positions

Professor of Anatomy, School of Medicine, Deakin University (part time)

Honorary Fellow & Associate Professor, Department of Anatomy & Neuroscience, University of Melbourne

Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Forensic Medicine, Monash University

Visiting Associate Professor, College of Medicine & Dentistry, James Cook University


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Prof Stephen Carmichael

Professor Stephen Carmichael (Life membership awarded 2010)

BA(Hons) (Kenyon), PhD (Tulane), DSc (Kenyon)


After completing a college degree at Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, Stephen initially took up an anatomy teaching position at West Virginia University before moving to The Mayo clinic in 1982 where he held a number of positions including Associate Professor, Chair of the Department of Anatomy and Professor of Orthopedic Surgery.

Stephen has been a member of 22 scientific societies including President of Association of Anatomy, Cell Biology, and Neurobiology Chairpersons, the Histochemical Society and Mayo Chapter of Sigma Xi. He was also a member of the Board of Directors of the American Association of Anatomists and Editor-in-Chief of Clinical Anatomy

Stephen has been the recipient of several awards including Teacher of the Year at Mayo Medical School, Mayo Clinic Alumni Association Distinguished Alumnus Award, R. Benton Adkins, Jr. Distinguished Service Award (AACA), Distinguished Member Award, Anatomical Society of Southern Africa and Volunteer of the Year," Courage Alpine Skiers

Major areas of research and scholarship

His research interests include the adrenal chromaffin cell as a model neuron and he has published 160 papers and authored 7 books on this topic plus one book on climbing Mount Kilimanjaro!

Stephen’s teaching interests include gross, developmental and microscopic natomy

Current Positions

Emeritus Professor of Anatomy and Orthopedic Surgery at the Mayo Clinic



Prof Helen Nicholson

Prof Helen Nicholson (Life membership awarded 2018)

BSc Hons, MB ChB, MD (Bristol)


Helen graduated with an MBChB and BSc Hons from the University of Bristol and practiced medicine for several years before returning to undertake doctoral studies and pursuing an academic career in the Department of Anatomy at Bristol. She moved to New Zealand in 2000 to take up a Chair in Anatomy and later served in the role of Dean of the Otago School of Medical Sciences.

Major areas of research and scholarship

Helen has research interests in the areas of clinical anatomy, reproductive biology and medical education and these have led to numerous publications as well as production of the television documentaries “Donated to Science” and “Practising Medicine”.

Helen was involved in the formation of ANZACA and was elected the inaugural president in October 2004.

In 2009, Helen was elected to the Executive of the International Federation of Associations of Anatomists where she holds the role of Editor of Plexus.

Current positions

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (External Engagement) and Professor of Anatomy at the University of Otago.

Executive member of the International Federation of Associations of Anatomists where she holds the role of Editor of Plexus.


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Prof Colin Wendell-Smith

Professor Colin Wendell-Smith AO (Life membership awarded 2010, deceased 2015)



Professor Wendell-Smith, originally from the UK, served with the British Army as a medical doctor during the Malayan Emergency. He practiced as an obstetrician and gynaecologist between 1951-1955 in the UK, Malaya and Singapore before moving to Australia. He was an Associate Professor of Anatomy at the University of NSW until 1968 when he accepted the position as Chair of Anatomy in the fledgling medical school at the University of Tasmania (UTAS).

Professor Wendell-Smith was elected President of the Staff Association in 1971 at UTAS and eventually served as Deputy Vice Chancellor. Even after his retirement, he continued to serve the anatomy community as a member of the Federated International Committee on Anatomical Terminology (FICAT) as a delegate of the Anatomical Society of Australia and New Zealand, where he served as secretary.

Major areas of research and scholarship

His legacy includes the establishment of the Family Planning Association of Tasmania. He served on the national council of the FPA of Australia from 1972-1989 and in 1989 was the Australian representative on the International Planned Parenthood Federation. He was also an active member of Dying With Dignity until his passing in 2015. In 1991, Professor Wendell-Smith was awarded an Order of Australia for “services to public health”. Even after his passing, Professor Wendell-Smith continues to provide service to health and anatomy education as he has donated his body for anatomical dissection.