Council Commentary

A Tribute to Dr. Ian Fraser

The Population Council pays tribute to Dr. Ian Stewart Fraser and his contributions to ensuring the sexual and reproductive health, rights, and choices of populations around the world. Fraser passed away on 28 June.

Fraser was a pillar of the Population Council’s International Committee for Contraception Research (ICCR), an international advisory board that contributes to the development of new contraceptives and reproductive medicine, from 1991 to 2014. In this capacity, he contributed to several clinical trials including the major phase 3 trial of Annovera®, the first and only contraceptive that provides a year of protection against unintended pregnancy while fully under a woman’s control. He was also valued by several ICCR members as a mentor.

Fraser trained in Medicine and in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Edinburgh—where he also received a Doctorate of Science—and the University of Oxford. He joined the University of Sydney in 1975 and served as Professor of Reproductive Medicine from 1993 to 2014. He also served as Senior Visiting Medical Officer in Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney. In 2001 he became Officer in the Order of Australia (AO), which is awarded for distinguished service of a high degree to Australia or humanity at large.

Fraser served as Founding President of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (FRANZCOG) from 1998 to 2000, and as Honorary Secretary of the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics (FIGO) from 2006 to 2012. He was also the past-Chair of the FIGO Menstrual Disorders Committee.

Fraser held international scientific advisory positions on contraception, abnormal uterine bleeding, and endometriosis with the World Health Organization (WHO), the ICCR of the Population Council, among others. He published more than 450 peer-reviewed publications in the scientific and medical literature on menstrual disorders, contraception, endometriosis, menopause transition, and gynecological endoscopy.

The Population Council extends our deepest condolences to Fraser’s family and will remember him not only for his myriad scientific contributions but also for his bright mind, love of the opera, and personal warmth and kindness.