ANZGOG congratulates Member Prof Anna DeFazio and former Survivors Teaching Students volunteer Kristen Larsen for being awarded the 2020 Jeannie Ferris Cancer Australia Recognition Award. Both Prof DeFazio and Ms Larsen were recognised for their significant contribution to improving gynaecological cancer outcomes.

Cancer Australia has recognised two outstanding individuals for their dedicated efforts to improving outcomes for women with gynaecological cancer. On 26 June 2020 Cancer Australia announced Kristen Larsen and Prof Anna DeFazio as the 2020 recipients of the Jeannie Ferris Cancer Australia Recognition Award. The Award was launched in 2013 in honour of the late Senator Jeannie Ferris to recognise exceptional efforts made by individuals in Australia to improve gynaecological cancer outcomes.

Kristen (centre) at the OCRFA Conference in 2017.

In 2020, it is estimated that approximately 18 women will be diagnosed with gynaecological cancer each day in Australia. It will be the fifth most commonly diagnosed cancer in women this year.

Kristen Larsen, the first posthumous recipient of the Award, has been recognised in Category One, for members of the community, for her passionate advocacy for ovarian cancer awareness. Kristen was diagnosed with metastatic ovarian cancer at the age of 21. She dedicated the remaining six years of her life to raising awareness and funds for ovarian cancer.

Kristen is a former Regional Coordinator for ANZGOG’s Survivors Teaching Students (STS) program. Kristen was a key motivator to start the program in QLD.

Professor DeFazio speaking at ANZGOG’s 2019 Annual Scientific Meeting.

Prof Anna DeFazio is the successful recipient of Category Two of the Award, open to health professionals and researchers, working in gynaecological cancer.

“While it is my name on this award, it is really an award deserved by the whole team that I have the great pleasure to work with,” stated Prof DeFazio. “I work with a wonderful team of researchers collaboratively across Australia and internationally. We have established a model of embedding research into clinical care. This way, researchers can see first-hand the most difficult challenges faced by the doctors looking after women with ovarian cancer. We have taken on these challenges and made them the focus of our research.”

Prof DeFazio is Chair of ANZGOG’s TR-ANZGOG Steering Committee and member of the Research Advisory Committee, Ovarian Tumour Type Working Group and OASIS Steering Committee.

Watch Cancer Australia’s Jeannie Ferris Cancer Australia Recognition Award 2020 video below: