Tom Spurling, interviewed by Terry Healy and Garrett Upstill, 26 April 2017 and 8 August 2017
Edited transcript (PDF – 354 KB)
Thomas Harley (Tom) Spurling talks about his early life in Perth, Western Australia, his secondary schooling at Albany High School and his experiences at the University of Western Australia. Tom then talks about his PhD at the University of Western Australia on the high precision measurement of the properties of gases and the influence of his PhD supervisor, Dr G A Bottomley. He recounts his experiences at the University of Maryland where he was a Post-Doctoral Fellow and his return to Australia in 1967 to take up a position of Lecturer in Chemistry at the University of Tasmania.
Tom joined the CSIRO Division of Applied Chemistry in 1969 and stayed with the Organisation in various roles until 2003. He describes his various roles in the Organisation, including the Assistant Chief of the Division of Applied Organic Chemistry, Manager of Policy and Planning in the Institute of Industrial Technologies, Chief of the Division of Chemicals and Polymers, Manager of a World Bank funded project in Indonesia and a CSIRO Fellow.
He talks about his second career at Swinburne University of Technology when in 2003, he was recruited as the Director of IRIS and promoted to the Dean of Engineering and Industrial Sciences.
He discusses his active involvement involved in professional societies including the Royal Australian Chemical Institute, the Federation of Asian Chemical Societies, the Federation of Australian Science and Technological Societies and the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering.
Tom was a Member of the CSIRO Board from 2008 to 2015.
Interview recorded on 2 February 2017 and 8 August 2017 at Swinburne University of Technology (Melbourne) as part of the CSIRO History Project.
Copyright owned by Swinburne University of Technology. Some re-use permitted (Creative Commons BY-NC-ND).