The Honourable Dr Kay Patterson AO

The Hon Dr Kay Patterson AO is the Age Discrimination Commissioner in the Australian Human Rights Commission, and an honorary professorial fellow in Monash’s Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences. She was appointed an officer in the Order of Australia in 2016.

She has a PhD in psychology from Monash, has taught at Monash and Sydney universities, and held senior academic positions, including chairman of the School of Behavioural Sciences at Lincoln Institute of Health Sciences (now at LaTrobe University). She studied gerontology at Michigan University and Pennsylvania State University.

She was elected to the Australian Senate, representing Victoria, in 1987. In government she held various positions, including parliamentary secretary to the ministers for immigration and foreign affairs.

In 2001, she was appointed to Cabinet as Minister for Health and Ageing, and in October 2003 as Minister for Family and Community Services and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women’s Issues. She retired from Cabinet in 2006, and from the Senate, after 21 years, in June 2008.

A graduate of the Institute of Company Directors, she was deputy chair of the Australian Regenerative Medicine Institute’s advisory board at Monash from 2008 to 2018, and is an ambassador for the institute.