Epworth Radiation Oncologist Dr Bronwyn King has been named one of the Australian Financial Review/Westpac 100 Women of Influence in 2014.
Dr King was recognised for her work as Founder of the Tobacco-Free Investment Initiative.
The initiative was established when Dr King discovered she had been unwittingly supporting the tobacco industry via superannuation investments while applying for a home loan.
She developed the initiative to engage with Australian superannuation funds and reduce investment in tobacco companies, as well as encouraging people to be aware of their superannuation investments.
Dr King’s work has contributed to 17 major funds implementing completely tobacco-free investment mandates, with a total tobacco divestment to date of $1.2 billion.
As a Radiation Oncologist, Dr King has a special interest in treating women’s cancers with advanced technology and is also committed to helping people avoid the dangers of smoking.
“As a cancer doctor who cares for patients and families directly suffering as a result of tobacco exposure, I felt obliged to act. Initially, I engaged with the executive teams and boards of several large Australian superannuation companies and presented the case for tobacco divestment… The case became clearer and the complexities of divesting seemed surmountable,” said Dr King.
The initiative is endorsed by Australian health groups including Cancer Council Australia, Quit Victoria, VicHealth, Heart Foundation, Diabetes Australia and Lung Foundation Australia.
Dr King was also awarded the 2014 President’s Award from the Thoracic Society of Australia and New Zealand.
The 100 Women of Influence Awards celebrates outstanding women from a variety of sectors across Australia. Entrants are recognised for their outstanding ability to demonstrate vision, leadership, innovation and action in and beyond their fields.
Dr King was shortlisted in the Local/Regional category. Judges will award 10 category winners and one overall winner on 22 October. Winners receive prizes to support development of their organisation.