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Christobel Saunders

James Stewart Chair Of Surgery, The University of Melbourne

Professor Christobel Saunders AO, MB BS, FRCS, FRACS, FAAHMS is the James Stewart Chair of Surgery, the Head of the Department of Surgery at the University of Melbourne (Royal Melbourne Hospital precinct) and consultant surgeon in the Department of General Surgery at Royal Melbourne Hospital and the Peter MacCallum Cancer Institute. She is internationally recognised as one of Australia’s most prominent research-orientated cancer surgeons.

She has substantially contributed to breast cancer research including clinical trials of new treatments, psychosocial, translational and health services research.

In recognition of her sustained career excellence and innovation, Christobel has been publicly acknowledged through numerous awards and honours including Order of Australia 2018, the Uccio Querci della Rovere Award (2018), WA Women’s Hall of Fame Inductee (2018), WA Scientist of the Year (2017) and Cancer Council WA career Achievement Award (2021). She has performed research for >30 years evaluating the efficacy and utility of therapy for early breast cancer.

In the past five years, Christobel has published over 200 peer-reviewed journal articles (two in The Lancet), six letters to the editor/editorials, two research reports, two book chapters and one book. She sits on the boards of a number of health and research organisations including as Vice-President for All.can International and on the boards of All.can Australia, Breast Cancer Trials, the Australian Centre for Value Based Health Care and PathWest. Christobel is closely involved in strategic planning and management of health and cancer services in Australia including being on the Medicare Review Advisory Committee, past President of the Cancer Council WA and Breast Surgical Society of ANZ, and past Advisory Council member of Cancer Australia. She was Inaugural Chair of the state Health Service Provider, PathWest Laboratory Medicine.


  • –present
    Professor of Surgical Oncology, University of Western Australia


  • 1986 
    London University, MB BS