From AussieInnovation Wiki
Dr William James Peacock is Australia’s Chief Scientist, and world-renowned molecular biologist.
On January 22 2008, it was announced that Peacock would be an ex-officio member of the panel conducting the review of Australia's national innovation system, by dint of his position as Chief Scientist. 
Peacock was raised in Leura, west of Sydney. Early contact with the Blue Mountains bushland sparked a life-long interest in botany and biology.
Education, Awards & Affiliations
He majored in Botany and Zoology at the University of Sydney and graduated with first-class honours. He completed his PhD in 1963.
He won a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Oregon where he then studied Drosophila Genetics. In 1970 he would return to the US as Distinguished Visiting Professor in Arthur Kornberg’s Department of Biochemistry.
His work has earned Peacock a long list of honours. He was the co-recipient of the Prime Minister’s first Prize for Science in 2000. He was elected President of the Australian Academy of Science in 2002. He won the Farrer Memorial Medal in 1999, the Burnet Medal of the Australian Academy of Science for distinguished contributions in the Biological Sciences in 1989 and BHP Bicentennial Prize for the Pursuit of Excellence in Science and Technology in 1988.
He is a fellow of the Australian Academy of Science, the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, and the Australian Institute of Agricultural Science.
He also received the 2005 CSIRO Lifetime Achievement Award for his tremendous impact exerted over 40 years with the organisation.
International appointments also include fellowships at the Royal Society of London, a Foreign Fellow of the Indian National Science Academy in 1990 and becoming a Foreign Associate of U.S. National Academy of Sciences.
He also became a Companion of the Order of Australia, in 1994, for “pioneering research on plant development especially the discovery of the Flowering Switch Gene.” 
Peacock’s professional career really began when he joined the CSIRO Plant Industry in 1965. He rose to be the chief of division in 1978, a position he held until 2003.
His contributions to Australian science shouldn’t be underestimated. The CSIRO says that, "his laboratory pioneered molecular biology techniques in Australian plant science," and that, “this included the first isolation of a plant transposable element, the isolation of stress protection genes and the demonstration of genetic and epigenetic controls of flowering in Arabidopsis and cereals.” 
The work generated by his research has been published in 290 scientific publications. 
Beyond his work at the CSIRO Peacock has also founded the Gene Shears Company, GrainGene Alliance and High Rainfall Zone Wheat Company.
He has also been active promoting science to schools, advocating new school programs and helping to establish the Discovery Centre.
Since becoming Australia’s Chief Scientist in 2006, Peacock’s strong views on supporting genetically modified crops and nuclear power have made it clear he isn’t afraid to speak his mind, or draw some criticism.