Professor Ian Ritchie
ChemCentre is located in the Ian Ritchie Wing of the Resources and Chemistry Precinct on the Curtin University campus.
A tireless champion of chemistry and its role in the community, Professor Ritchie was instrumental in reshaping the State's scientific landscape by championing a practical, business focussed approach to science.
Professor Ritchie supported the retention and renewal of the WA Chemistry Centre. As a key government adviser and foundation board chair, he guided its transformation as the now world-class ChemCentre. He was also the driving force behind establishing Perth as an international hub of research in hydrometallurgy and the establishment of the AJ Parker Cooperative Research Centre for Hydrometallurgy in 1992, and served as its Director until his retirement in 2001. Under his leadership the Centre grew to become the world's leading, and largest, organisation for hydrometallurgical research.
Professor Ritchie was a founding member of the WA Premier's Science Council and the Scientific Advisory Committee to the WA Clean Air Council, where he was the first to advocate for a ban on lead in petrol. In 2003 he was the second recipient of the Premier's Prize for Achievement in Science, now the Scientist of the Year award. He was awarded WA Citizen of the Year in 1997, and was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2014. In 2016 Professor Ritchie was inducted into the WA Science Hall of Fame.
We celebrate Professor Ritchie’s legacy through our annual staff recognition program, including the Ian Ritchie Achievement Award and the Ritchie Early Career Award which recognise staff excellence in the performance of their role and their contribution to ChemCentre and beyond.