Francis Patrick Dwyer was born in Maitland, NSW in 1910. 

In 1930 he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from the University of Sydney and continued on in inorganic chemistry under the supervision of David Mellor gaining his Master of Science in 1933 from the same institution.

The following year he was appointed head teacher of Inorganic Chemistry at Sydney Technical College. In 1946 he was awarded the degree of Doctor of Science for his research on 'Diazoamino Compounds and Their Metallic Salts and Metallic Hydroxide Lakes' and shortly afterwards was appointed Senior Lecturer at the University of Sydney.

In 1958 he accepted the position of reader in Biological Inorganic Chemistry, John Curtin School of Medical Research at the Australian National University and in 1960 was given a Personal Chair at the ANU. In 1961 he was elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy. He died suddenly in 1962 at the age of 51.

Dwyer worked on many aspects of coordination chemistry, in particular, platinum metal chemistry and optical resolution of metal complexes. He was a pioneer of bio-inorganic chemistry and was making important contributions in this area at the time of his death.

Late in 1962 his friends, colleagues and former research students within the UNSW Chemical Society set up a fund to endow the Dwyer Memorial Lecture and Medal. The lecture is to be in the field of coordination chemistry and to be delivered by a distinguished worker in this field.

A complete list of the Dwyer Lecturers is given below.

I            1962       R. S. Nyholm, University College, London.

II           1964       M. Calvin, University of California, Berkeley

III          1965       J. C. Bailar, University of Illinois.

IV          1966       F. A. Cotton, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

V           1967       H. B. Jonassen, Tulane University.

VI          1968       F. Lions, University of Sydney.

VII         1969       D. P. Mellor, University of New South Wales.

VIII        1972       J. F. Duncan, Victoria University of Wellington.

IX          1973       H. Taube, Stanford University.

X           1975       J. Ibers, Northwestern University

XI          1975       G. Schwarzenbach, ETH, Zürich.

XII         1976       F. Basolo, Northwestern University.

XIII        1977       G. Wilkinson, Imperial College, London.

XIV        1977       L. Sacconi, University of Florence.

XV         1978       D. H. Busch, Ohio State University.

XVI        1980       R. J. Gillespie, McMaster University, Ontario.

XVII       1980       J. Chatt, University of Sussex.

XVIII      1982       J. Lewis, University of Cambridge.

XIX        1985       A. M. Sargeson, Australian National University.

XX         1986       H. Schmidbaur, Technische Universität München.

XXI        1988       R. H. Holm, Harvard University.

XXII       1989       J. D. Dunitz, ETH-Zentrum, Zürich.

XXIII      1989       T. J. Meyer, University of North Carolina.

XXIV      1991       R. D. Peacock, University of Leicester.

XXV       1993       G. C. Christou, University of Indiana.

XXVI      1994       D. C. Bradley, University of London.

XXVII     1997       M. L. H. Green, University of Oxford.

XXVIII    1999       P. J. Sadler, University of Edinburgh

XXIX      2000       W. R. Roper, University of Auckland

XXX       2002       I. G. Dance, University of New South Wales

XXXI      2003       H. Gray, California Institute of Technology

XXXII     2007       C. P. Casey, University of Wisconsin-Madison

XXXIII    2009       M. D. Fryzuk, University of British Columbia

XXXIV    2010       R. Eisenberg, University of Rochester

XXXV    2017       A. L Goodwin, Univerity of Oxford

Francis Patrick Dwyer UNSW