James Muecke

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James Muecke

James Sunter Muecke

EducationUniversity of Adelaide
OccupationMedical specialist
Medical career

Dr James Sunter Muecke AM is an ophthalmologist working in Adelaide, South Australia, and 2020 Australian of the Year, having been South Australian of the Year.[1]

Early life[edit]

Muecke was born in Adelaide,[2] and trained as a doctor at the University of Adelaide.[3]

Professional life[edit]

Muecke began his career in Kenya.[1] He relocated to South Australia and became an eye surgeon and blindness prevention pioneer, starting both Vision Myanmar at the South Australian Institute of Ophthalmology in 2000, and Sight For All, a social impact organisation "aiming to create a world where everyone can see".[1]

In the 2012 Queen's Birthday Honours, Muecke was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM).[4] He received the University of Adelaide's Vice-Chancellor's Alumni Award in 2019.[3]

On being appointed the 2020 Australian of the Year, Muecke immediately advocated for a tax on sugary drinks in the fight against Type 2 diabetes.[5][6]


  1. ^ a b c Dornin, Tim (6 November 2019). "Eye surgeon and sight protector James Muecke honoured as SA's Australian of the year". The Advertiser. Adelaide. Australian Associated Press. Retrieved 25 January 2020.
  2. ^ Doherty, Ben (25 January 2020). "Australian of the year: Dr James Muecke awarded top prize and Ashleigh Barty also honoured". Guardian Australia. Retrieved 25 January 2020.
  3. ^ a b "Dr James Muecke AM". Alumni. University of Adelaide. 31 May 2019. Retrieved 27 January 2020.
  4. ^ "Member of the Order of Australia (AM) entry for Dr James Sunter Muecke". It's an Honour, Australian Honours Database. Canberra, Australia: Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. 11 June 2012. Retrieved 25 January 2020. For service to ophthalmic medicine, to the provision of eye health services and rehabilitation programs for Indigenous and South East Asian communities, and to professional organisations.
  5. ^ McCauley, Dana (25 January 2020). "Australian of the Year calls for sugar tax to fight diabetes-caused blindness". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 25 January 2020.
  6. ^ Pianegonda, Elise (25 January 2020). "Australian of the Year 2020 awarded to eye surgeon Dr James Muecke, with Ash Barty, youth advocate and obstetrician also honoured". ABC News Online. Australia. Retrieved 25 January 2020.