Presidents of the Society

The Society was called the “Philosophical Society of Australasia” from 1821–2, “The Australian Philosophical Society” from 1850–5 and “The Philosophical Society of New South Wales” from 1855–1865 and, upon receiving Royal Assent, “The Royal Society of New South Wales” in 1866.


2021– S.M. Pond AM FRSN Medicine Vice-President 2020–21
2018–2020 I.H. Sloan AO FRSN Mathematics Vice-President & President-elect 2017-18
2016–17 D.B. Hibbert AM FRSN Chemistry Vice-President & President-elect 2014-15
2012–15 D.C.A. Hector AM FRSN Chemical Engineering Secretary (Editorial) 2010-11
2007–2011 J.R. Hardie AM FRSN Geology/Education Second term (non-consecutive)
2005–06 J.C. Kelly DistFRSN Physics  
2003–04 K. Kelly Science Journalism  
2001–02 D.A. Craddock Aeronautics  
2000 P.A. Williams Geology  
1999 A.T. Baker Chemistry  
1998 D.J. O'Connor Physics  
1997 E.C. Potter Chemistry Second term
1996 K.L. Grose Ancient History  
1995 D.F. Branagan AM Geology  
1994 J.R. Hardie AM FRSN Geology/Education Secretary 1992
1993 R.A.L. Osborne Geology  
1992 F.L. Sutherland Geology Second term
1991 E.C. Potter Chemistry  
1990 G.W.K. Ford MBE Nuclear Science Secretary 1993-
1989 H.S. Hancock Geology  
1988 D.E. Winch Mathematics  
1987 F.L. Sutherland Geology  
1986 M.A. Stubbs-Race Engineering  
1985 J.H. Loxton Mathematics  
1984 R.S. Bhathal FRSN Astronomy Secretary 1989-91
1983 R.S. Vagg Chemistry  
1982 T.W. Cole Engineering  
1981 B.A. Warren OAM DistFRSN Pathology  
1980 G.S. Gibbons Geology  
1979 D.H. Napper Chemistry  
1978 F.C. Beavis Geology  
1977 W.H. Robertson Astronomy  
1976 D.J. Swaine Chemistry Secretary 1986-88
1975 E.K. Chaffer Geology Secretary 1970-71
1974 J.W. Pickett Palaeontology  
1973 J.P. Pollard Mathematics/Statistics  
1972 J.C. Cameron Geology Secretary 1969
1971 M.J. Puttock Metrologist  
1970 W.E. Smith Mathematics  
1969 J.W.G. Neuhaus Chemistry  
1968 A. Keane Mathematics  
1967 A.H. Low Mathematics Secretary 1963-65
1966 A.H. Voisey Geology  
1965 A.A. Day Geology Joint Secretary 1959-60
1964 J.W. Humphries Physics  
1963 H.H.G. McKern Chemistry  
1962 W.B. Smith-White Mathematics  
1961 R.J.W. LeFevre Chemistry  
1960 H.A.J. Donegan Chemistry  
1959 A.F.A. Harper Physics  
1958 J.L. Griffith Mathematics Secretary 1955-57; 1966-68
1957 F.N. Hanlon Geology Joint Secretary 1954-56
1956 F.D. McCarthy Anthropology  
1955 M.R. Lemberg FRS Biochemistry  
1954 R.S. Nyholm FRS Chemistry  
1953 Ida A. Browne Palaeontology First female President; Joint Secretary 1950-52; 1957-58
1952 C.J. Magee Agriculture  
1951 R.C.L. Bosworth Chemistry Secretary 1948-50
1950 F.R. Morrison Chemistry Joint Secretary 1946-47
1949 Harley Wood Astronomy Joint Secretary 1948; 1951; 1958-60
1948 R.L. Aston Engineering  
1947 J.A. Dulhunty Geology  
1946 F. Lions Chemistry  
1945 A. Bolliger Medicine  
1944 G.D. Osborne Geology Joint Secretary 1953
1943 A.B. Walkom Palaeobotany  
1942 Prof. H. Priestley Biochemistry  
1941 D.P. Mellor Chemistry Joint Secretary 1943-47
1940 A.P. Elkin CMG Anthropology Joint Secretary 1938-39; 1941-45
1939 H.S.H. Wardlaw Biochemistry  
1938 J.C. Earl Chemistry  
1937 W.L. Waterhouse MC Botany  
1936 E.H. Booth MC Physics Joint Secretary 1934-36
1935 A.R. Penfold Chemistry  
1934 R.J. Noble Agriculture Joint Secretary 1933
1933 R.W. Challiner Chemistry  
1932 W.R. Browne Geology  
1931 Edwin Cheel Botany  
1930 O.U. Vonwiller Physics Joint Secretary 1927-28; 1948
1929 L.A. Cotton Geology  
1928 W. Poole Engineering  
1927 Prof. J. Douglas Stewart Veterinary Medicine  
1926 Dr W.G. Woolnough Geology  
1925 Prof. R.D Watt Agriculture  
1924 Dr C. Anderson Mineralogy Joint Secretary 1935-42
1923 R.H. Cambage CBE Surveying Second term
1922 C.A. Sussmilch Geology Joint Secretary 1928-33; 1936-37
1921 E.C. Andrews Geology  
1920 J. Nangle OBE Astronomy  
1919 C.E. Fawsitt Chemistry  
1918 W.S. Dun Palaeontology  
1917 .B. Cleland Microbiology  
1916 T.H. Houghton Engineering  
1915 R. Greig-Smith Bacteriology Joint Secretary 1925-26
1914 C. Hedley Zoology  
1913 H.G. Smith Chemistry  
1912 R.H. Cambage CBE Surveying Joint Secretary 1914-1922; 1925-27
1911 J.H. Maiden FRS Botany Second term
1910 T.W.E. David KBE CMG DSO FRS Geology Second term
1909 H.D. Walsh Engineering  
1908 W.H. Hamlet Chemistry Second term
1907 Henry Deane Engineering Second term
1906 T.P. Anderson Stuart Physiology Second term
1905 H.A. Lenehan Astronomy  
1904 C.O. Burge Engineering  
1903 F.B. Guthrie Chemistry Joint Secretary1907-1911
1902 W.H. Warren Engineering Second term
1901 H.C. Russell CMG FRS Astronomy Fourth term
1900 A. Liversidge FRS FRSE Chemistry Third term
1899 W.H. Hamlet Chemistry  
1898 G.H. Knibbs CMG Mathematics Joint Secretary 1896-97; 1899-1906
1897 Henry Deane Engineering  
1896 J.H. Maiden ISO Botany Joint Secretary 1893-5; 1897-1913
1895 T.W.E. David KBE CMG DSO FRS Geology Joint Secretary 1893-94
1894 R. Threlfall Physics  
1893 T.P. Anderson Stuart Physiology Joint Secretary 1892
1892 W.H. Warren Engineering Joint Secretary 1889-1891
1891 H.C. Russell CMG FRS Astronomy Third term
1890 A. Leibius Chemistry Joint Secretary 1875-1885
1889 Prof. A. Liversidge FRS FRSE Chemistry Second term
1888 Sir Alfred Roberts Medicine  
1887 C.S. Wilkinson Geology  
1886 C. Rolleston CMG Statistics Second term
1885 A. Liversidge FRS FRSE Chemistry Joint Secretary 1875-1884;1886-1888
1884 H.C. Russell CMG FRS Astronomy Second term
1883 Prof. J. Smith Physics Second elected term
1882 C. Rolleston CMG Statistics Auditor-General
1881 H.C. Russell FRS Astronomy  
1880 Hon. J. Smith Physics First elected President
  Hon. J. Smith Physics Senior Vice-President
1879 Lord Augustus Loftus GCB PC Diplomat Governor NSW, Hon. President
  Rev. W.B. Clarke FRS Geology Senior Vice-President
1872-78 Sir Hercules Robinson GCMG PC Public Administration Governor NSW, Hon. President
  Rev. W.B. Clarke FRS Geology Senior Vice-President
1868-71 Lord Somerset R. Lowry-Corry GCMG PC 4th Earl of Belmore Public Administration Governor NSW, Hon. President
  Rev. W.B. Clarke FRS Geology Senior Vice-President
1866-67 Sir John Young GCMG KCB Law Governor NSW, Hon. President
  Rev. W.B. Clarke FRS Geology Senior Vice-President
1861-65 Sir John Young GCMG KCB Law Governor NSW, Hon. President
  Hon. E. Deas Thomson KCMG CB Public Administration Senior Vice-President. Clerk of both the Council of NSW and the Executive & Legislative Council
1858-60 Sir William Denison KCB Engineering Governor NSW, Hon. President
  Sir Charles Nicholson Medicine Senior Vice-President
1855-57 Sir William Denison KCB Engineering Governor NSW, Hon. President
1850-55 Hon. E. Deas-Thomson KCMG CB Public Administration Senior Vice-President. Clerk of both the Council of NSW and the Executive & Legislative Council
1821-22 Sir Thomas Brisbane GCB GCH FRS FRSE Astronomy Governor NSW, Hon. President

List compiled by Peter Tyler and Marian Haire. Sources used were The Royal Society of NSW, Journal and Proceedings and W.R. Browne, "Scientific Societies in Australia (6)", Proceedings of the Royal Australian Chemical Institute, March 1961.  Recent updates and rearrangement by Brynn Hibbert.

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