Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria
Born 22 October 1956, Lower Hutt, New Zealand,
Currently Honorary Research Associate at Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust
University of Sydney
1975-02 to 1978-11 | B.Sc. (Hons) (School of Biological Sciences)
1979-02 to 1982-12 | Ph.D. (School of Biological Sciences)
He has received multiple awards, honours and scholarships, beginning as a lad with the Bronze Medal of the Orchid Society of New South Wales for the Champion Orchid of the Australasian Native Orchid Society’s Annual Show. He topped his Honours year in the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Sydney. He led the submission on scientific research for the review of his institution, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney, several years ago.
He was posted to Kew as Australian Botanical Liaison Officer in 1992-3.
Peter has also taken a leading role involving the RBG in tertiary teaching, although this was not a requirement of his job. He was formerly an adjunct Associate Professor at the University of New England and is currently an adjunct Associate Professor at the University of New South Wales and at La Trobe University. As one of five members of a teaching team at the University of New England, he was cited for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning in the Carrick Awards for Australian University Teaching from the Australian Learning and Teaching Council. This award recognised an innovative trans-institutional undergraduate course in plant systematics.
By invitation, Peter has also taught a tertiary course in Rhodes University, South Africa. He has made an outstanding contribution to postgraduate teaching, more than that of many university-based academics.
His taxonomic revisions and treatments include Persoonia (his PhD thesis topic) and, for the Flora of New South Wales, most of Orchidaceae and large chunks of the Proteaceae, Rutaceae and Fabaceae. He has described and named more than 100 new taxa at various ranks within these families.
The following species have been named in his honor:
Hakea westoniana (Proteaceae)
Leionema westonii (Rutaceae)
Source: Burbidge Medal nomination: Australasian Systematic Botany Society Newsletter 161 (December 2014) p.29-32
Portrait Photo: M.Fagg, 2009, now in ANBG Photo Collection.
Data from 5,914 specimens