“We have been fortunate to have someone of Michael’s calibre leading NDARC for 10 years now. His own research is so impressive, but his leadership and commitment to capacity development are at least as important. As is his contribution more broadly to UNSW Medicine and Health, his theme and SPHERE CAG leadership, and his contribution to Mindgardens. I look forward to having the pleasure of working with him for many years to come.”

Professor Vlado Perkovic, Dean UNSW Medicine and Health

“It is with pleasure that I add my congratulations to Michael Farrell on the tenth anniversary of his role as Director of NDARC in the Faculty of Medicine and Health at UNSW. I commenced as Chairman of NDARC soon after Michael took up his role and it has been an absolute pleasure to support all his efforts in leading the organisation.

His experience, passion and cool, calm and collected style of leadership is widely recognised and the strong position of NDARC following the challenging circumstances of 2020 is an absolute credit to Michael and his Team. The 10 years have flown by, but there is still plenty more to do and Michael’s leadership will ensure it is done well and that NDARC continues to enjoy a well-deserved reputation within the University, within Australia and internationally.

Congratulations Michael!”

Mr Bob Mansfield OA, NDARC Advisory Board

“Michael has clearly made a major contribution to the AOD sector nationally and internationally. With great skill, judgement, timing and sense of humour he has shepherded the resources and reputation of NDARC extremely well over the last ten years during times that were difficult for both government funding and most recently for the university sector as a whole. I count him as a good friend as well as intelligent and valuable colleague.”

Professor Mel Miller, NDARC Advisory Board

“It is with great pleasure that I congratulate Michael on his 10-year anniversary as the Director of the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC). Since arriving in Australia from Kings College London to take up this role Michael has firmly cemented NDARC, and UNSW’s position on the map as an international leader in generating high quality research and evidence on the prevention and treatment of addiction. As the conductor of the great orchestral team that is NDARC, bringing together collaborators across Australia and the world, Michael has ensured that this cutting-edge research is translated into strong and impactful policy and clinical practice. Under his stewardship, NDARC has been at the forefront of calling for a new international approach to drug use, leading a landmark report published in 2019 in the The Lancet. Likewise, as the COVID-19 crisis has unfolded, NDARC has directed the Australian arm of the COVID-19 Health Care Workers (HEROES) Study, an international collaboration of more than 20 countries across five continents. Thanks to Michael’s ability to keep his finger on the pulse of the latest developments in the field, NDARC has anticipated the range of new challenges presented by the ever evolving and complex problem of addiction, including those thrown up during the COVID-19 pandemic, and met these with an abiding commitment to do the best for some of the most marginalised people in our society.”

Professor Nicholas Fisk, NDARC Advisory Board

Sincere congratulations on this very important milestone.  Wow, 10 years at the helm of the Centre in the Faculty of Medicine and Health at UNSW Sydney – who would have known 9 years in this role that you would be dealing with a worldwide pandemic !!  

Your contribution to the sector has been and continues to be exceptional. I still remember when you arrived at NDARC, how lucky we were at Justice Health to have Professor Farrell join the sector, with not only a very long list as a researcher but also, with hands on knowledge and experience of substance misuse in the prison system.  I am honoured that our paths have continued to cross in your decade of being at NDARC, whether it has been as research partners or on boards, in the public and now the Not For Profit sector.  Everyone benefits from knowing Professor Michael Farrell, not least of all, those impacted by substance misuse.

Ms Julie Babineau, NDARC Advisory Board member and CEO Odyssey House NSW