The Univeristy of Melbourne The Royal Melbourne Hopspital

A joint venture between The University of Melbourne and The Royal Melbourne Hospital


18 Nov 2022

Vale Lionel Gell AM (1928 – 2022)

The Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity joins the University of Melbourne community in paying tribute to the life and legacy of Lionel Gell.

As one of the Doherty Institute’s longest donors, Mr Gell had been a generous supporter since the Doherty’s early days. He was a firm believer in the Institute’s vision to improve health globally through discovery research and the prevention, treatment and cure of infectious diseases.

His most profound impact at the Doherty Institute was made through the Lionel Gell Foundation, which has provided significant support to Doherty Institute graduate researchers over the years.

Most notably, the Doherty Institute’s first-ever Indigenous health PhD scholarship – the Yiaga Ngarnga Scholarship for Infection and Immunity – was awarded in 2021 to Kamilaroi woman Kristy Gardner, an achievement Mr Gell considered momentous.

Recently, many graduate researchers benefited from the Lionel Gell-funded 2022 Graduate Research Conference Support Program, allowing them to travel and attend international conferences. This formative overseas experience has been important and inspiring, particularly for those presenting at their first international conference.

In the words of Lionel Gell: “It is incredibly rewarding to watch the development of both the young researchers coming through the Institute, as well as seeing how the Institute as a whole adapts and changes to the new and emerging health concerns of both the Australian and global communities.”

We extend our deepest sympathies to Lionel’s family and friends, and the staff at the Lionel Gell Foundation.


Lionel Gell was also a long-standing supporter of the Victorian College of the Arts and a memorial service in Lionel’s honour will be held at the Grant Street Theatre and Lionel’s Café on the University of Melbourne’s Southbank campus in early 2023. 


2021 Doherty Institute Impact Report:  Interview with Lionel Gell

Celebrating Five Years: Donor in the spotlight – Lionel Gell