Mosman Art Prize 2023 Entry

The Surgeon, the mother, the wife, the friend

Mosman Art Prize 2023 Entry

Cindy Mak is a breast surgeon in Sydney who is known for her compassion as well as her surgical skills. She came to Australia alone, in 1991, aged 18, at the encouragement of her mother who was worried that Malaysia’s discrimination policies against the Chinese would mean her opportunities were limited.

Cindy studied medicine at Sydney University, went to the UK for further training and became the first female breast surgeon at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital. In 2015 she became the head of breast surgery and now heads a department of 11 breast surgeons.

Cindy lectures nationally and internationally, and helps to train the next generation of Australian and New Zealand breast surgeons as chair of the BreastSurgANZ oncoplastic breast surgery committee.

Cindy is married, with two children, and admits to struggling to balance life as a mother, wife, friend and surgeon. She wakes at 5am daily to prepare for surgery but for her it’s never a chore, only a privilege.