'I was so enchanted by Joe's telling of his 'most significant science' that the urge to ask to write his story became irresistible. The science story he told me was of the path to his doctorate--a path that was somewhat directed by his love for a girl.'
Joe's Baker's doctorate, Studies on Tyrian purple and its precursors from Australian molluscs, resulted from inadvertently finding a chemical produced by a shellfish collected on a rock platform and led to his extraordinary life. However, the reason he was fishing at all was to gain the skills to better woo the girl with whom he was smitten--she was a keen and skilled fisher.
Joe Baker led a rich, enormously productive and vaulable life and his work and contribution to the community has been widely recognised at official levels, including being appointed an officer of the Order of Australia.
Joe held a deeply embedded belief in providing whole-hearted service to society. He died in 2018 and to his last breath he most fervently wished for an informed society that cared for the land, sea and all the people who inhabited these spaces.