Described as a “trailblazer” and a “fearless advocate”, Alyawarre woman Pat Anderson has stepped down as the chair of the Lowitja Institute after almost two decades in the role.

A respected Aboriginal health leader, Ms Anderson AO was instrumental in the establishment of the institute, which became one of Australia’s most renowned Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community controlled health research organisations.

She has received a wide array of recognition for her work, including being made an Officer of the Order of Australia and receiving a NAIDOC Lifetime Achievement award.

Lowitja Institute CEO Dr Janine Mohamed says Ms Anderson is a role model for “many parts of our society.”