Message from the Patron

Innovation will shape our future. Innovation is currently the word of the moment, highlighting the importance of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. So, like so many buzz words, do we walk on by? NO, engagement of all of us is key to driving to a future we are proud of.

Once again, it is a tremendous privilege to continue my role as Patron and I am honoured to be part of the 2016 WA Innovator of the Year program. I have a fundamental belief that innovative problem solving is key to societal improvement and sustainability. As always, I am excited to learn from the entries of the WA Innovator of the Year and connect with people who are problem solvers.

I have had the privilege of working in translational practice, linking research with clinical care, harnessing science and technology to improve outcome from burn injury, for over 2 decades. I have seen the impact of bringing basic science to the bedside of people whose lives have changed in an instant. Faced with problems on a daily basis, we can choose to engage in innovative solutions and explore the possibilities of tomorrow.

We all have ideas all the time, but often they slip away unrecognised even by ourselves. Less often, the idea sticks with the tenacious individual who simply makes it work through thick and thin. We need to learn from those tenacious individuals to understand the power of innovative problem solving.

As we look around each day, there are issues large and small; these represent opportunities to engage in the improvement in community here in Western Australia, from oil and gas to health, from food sustainability to information technology, any area you care to mention. Harnessing the opportunities and driving them forward takes personal energy and sacrifice. We need to recognise and applaud that work and celebrate the achievements.

We can all be part of the journey, supporting home grown solutions as they launch onto a world stage to making sure we learn from today, so that tomorrow is better.

Winthrop Professor Fiona Wood FRACS AM, Director of the Burns Service of Western Australia

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