2023 Outstanding Alumna Award Recipient
Prof Felicity Baker
Class of 1988
Felicity is one of four Baker sisters who came through Genazzano during the 1980s and early 1990s. Family is her rock, and she shares a very strong bond with her mum and sisters. She is fiercely proud of her Polish heritage. Felicity enjoys nothing more than getting away with husband Nathan (a former Director of Information at Gen) and their twin teenage boys, to enjoy an open fire with a good red in winter and surf, sun and sand in summer.
Felicity received three nominations for this award. It is evident from these that her family and friends describe her as an admirable human being – kind, funny, loving, intelligent, patient, selfless, and above all a person with strong ethics and integrity – a great role model for those around her, and also for the Genazzano community.
Felicity’s professional career is awe-inspiring. As a longstanding professor at the University of Melbourne and holding numerous prestigious academic appointments worldwide in the field of music therapy, there is no-one more capable of demonstrating her love of learning and career success than Dr Felicity Baker.
Felicity has authored 6 books, 29 book chapters; and more than 150 publications in high impact journals. She has provided extensive service as Editor of journals and is frequently invited to present keynote speeches at conferences worldwide, including the World Dementia Council Summit in March 2023 and the upcoming Australian Association for Gerontology. Felicity has supervised 19 PhDs to completion, 3 with university awards for ‘best PhD’. Last year Felicity published the largest music therapy trial in The Lancet Healthy Longevity and has just submitted another to The Lancet’s eClinicalMedicine.
Felicity has been awarded over AU$16M grant funding to work with peers on music therapy research projects worldwide. She was the first Australian to win National Health and Medical Research Council grants for Creative Arts Therapies. She moved into the European granting schemes and has headed up some big trials. In 2022, Felicity was commissioned to undertake a series of studies for the World Health Organisation. She has twice been appointed President of the Australian Music Therapy Association and has received numerous awards for her service to music therapy, including an outstanding Australian University Learning and Teaching Award presented by Julia Gillard when she was Minister for Education.
Felicity is the second ever recipient of the World Federation of Music Therapy Research award (most coveted in the field) and was their triennial keynote speaker for the second time in July 2023 in Vancouver. Felicity mentors early and mid-career researchers and is about to launch the International Music Therapy Clinical Trials Research Network which is all about capacity building for the next generation of music therapy researchers.
Felicity is a truly global citizen with friends and colleagues in every corner of the world who is passionate about her contribution to music therapy and nurturing the next generation of brilliant researchers and clinicians. She is an inspiration, mentor, and valued collaborator for so many, as evidenced by her global profile and repeat invitations to speak, teach, assess, and innovate around the globe. Her energy for sharing her work, spreading the word and learning from her peers is indefatigable.
On behalf of the Genazzano community, we extend our heartfelt congratulations to Dr Felicity Baker on receiving the Outstanding Alumna Award for 2023 and we acknowledge her for the inspiration she continues to share with Gen girls today and into the future.
The recipients in previous years have received the award for their contributions as detailed below:
- 1995: Dr Suzanne Crowe (1967) Medical Research
- 1996: Dr Patricia Desmond (1974) Medicine
- 1997: Miss Catherine Santamaria (1962) Public Service and Public Policy
- 1998: Dr Jane Connor (Posthumous Award) (1986) Medicine
- 1999: Ms Gabrielle Trainor (1973) Governance and Communications
- 2000: Ms Margaret Easterbrook (1981) Journalism
- 2001: Sr Barbara Brown-Graham fcJ (1963) Education and the FCJ Society
- 2002: Ms Jacinta Heffey (1965) Law
- 2003: Dr Brenda Niall AO (1948) Literature
- 2004: Professor Marie Emmitt (1963) Education
- 2005: Miss Julie Chamberlin (1952) Education
- 2006: Ms Angela Cannon (1982) Law
- 2007: Ms Melinda Crean (1986) Music and the Arts
- 2008: Mrs Kerry Stone (1965) Social Action
- 2009: Ms Sally Isaac (Posthumous Award) (1990) Local Government
- 2010: Dr Anita Clarke (1982) Medicine
- 2011: Dr Judith Paphazy (1958) Psychology
- 2012: Mrs Fiona Scanlan (1978) Fashion Design
- 2013: Dr Bernadette Tobin (1963) Bioethics
- 2014: Sr Maryrose Dennehy fcJ (1949) Education and the FCJ Society
- 2014: Chloe McCardel (2002) Marathon Swimming and charity work
- 2015: Janet DeNeefe (1976) Contribution to the Indonesian Community and Tourism
- 2016: Jane Kennedy (1982) Media, Film and Television
- 2017: Dr Sarah McNab (1995) Medicine
- 2018: Julia Zaetta (1969) Media
- 2019: Rebecca Daniher (2008) FightMND
- 2020: Mary Hiscock (1955) Law
- 2021: Libby Murphy (1987) Public Service
- 2022: Dr Philomene Joshua Tenni (1948)
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