1991

PROFESSOR CHAN HENG CHEE
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
AMBASSADOR-AT-LARGE & CHAIRMAN, NAC

1992

DR KANWALJIT SOIN
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
ORTHOPAEDIC SURGEON & FIRST WOMAN NOMINATED MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT

1993

HEDWIG ANUAR
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
FORMER DIRECTOR, NATIONAL LIBRARY

1994

LEAENA TAMBYAH
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
FOUNDER, AWWA SPECIAL SCHOOL

1995

YU-FOO YEE SHOON
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
FORMER MINISTER OF STATE & TRADE UNIONIST

1996

FANG AI LIAN
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
FORMER CHAIRMAN & MANAGING PARTNER, ERNST & YOUNG

1997

ELIZABETH SAM
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
FORMER DEPUTY PRESIDENT, OCBC BANK

1998

CLAIRE CHIANG
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, BANYAN TREE HOLDINGS

1999

JENNIE CHUA
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
FORMER CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER, RAFFLES INTERNATIONAL

1999

KIT CHAN
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
SINGER & ACTRESS

1999

TERESA HSU
HER WORLD SPECIAL AWARD
FOUNDER, HOME FOR THE AGED SICK & HEART TO HEART SERVICES

2000

DR JENNIFER LEE
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
FORMER CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, KK WOMEN’S & CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL

2000

JING JUNHONG
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
HEAD COACH, NATIONAL WOMEN’S TABLE TENNIS TEAM

2001

CHNG SEOK TIN
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
ARTIST, WRITER & COMMUNITY WORKER

2001

STEFANIE SUN
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
SINGER-SONGWRITER

2002

OLIVIA LUM
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
FOUNDER & GROUP CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, HYFLUX LTD

2002

ELIM CHEW
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
ENTREPRENEUR & FOUNDER, 77TH STREET

2003

HALIMAH YACOB
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
SPEAKER OF PARLIAMENT & TRADE UNIONIST

2003

DR WONG TING HWAY
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
SURGEON & HUMANITARIAN WORKER

2004

ANNABEL PENNEFATHER
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
LAWYER & VICE PRESIDENT, SINGAPORE NATIONAL OLYMPIC COUNCIL

2004

LI JIAWEI
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
FORMER NATIONAL TABLE TENNIS PLAYER

2005

EULEEN GOH
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
FORMER CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, STANDARD CHARTERED SINGAPORE

2005

THERESA GOH
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
NATIONAL PARALYMPIC SWIMMER

2005

GALA DINNER
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR & YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER AWARDS
SEE PHOTOS

2006

LIM SOO HOON
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
PERMANENT SECRETARY, MINISTRY OF FINANCE

2006

ESTHER TAN
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
NAVAL DIVER & ENDURANCE SPORTS SPECIALIST

2007

DR NOELEEN HEYZER
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
UNDER-SECRETARY-GENERAL, UNITED NATIONS & SOCIAL SCIENTIST

2007

MELISSA KWEE
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, NATIONAL VOLUNTEER & PHILANTHROPY CENTRE

2008

GOH SOO KHIM
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
CO-FOUNDER & FORMER ARTISTIC DIRECTOR, SINGAPORE DANCE THEATRE

2008

LAURENTIA TAN
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
PARALYMPIC EQUESTRIAN ATHLETE

2008

YIP PIN XIU
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
NATIONAL PARALYMPIC SWIMMER

2009

LIM HWEE HUA
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
FORMER CABINET MINISTER

2009

SINGAPORE WOMEN'S EVEREST TEAM
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
MOUNTAINEERS

2009

GALA DINNER
HER WORLD 50TH ANNIVERSARY & WOMAN OF THE YEAR AWARDS
SEE PHOTOS & WATCH VIDEO

2010

DR CHEONG KOON HEAN
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
CHIEF EXECUTIVE, HOUSING & DEVELOPMENT BOARD

2010

DR MARISSA TEO
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
RESEARCH FELLOW, NATIONAL CANCER CENTRE SINGAPORE

2010

GALA DINNER
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR, YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER & SPECIAL AWARD
SEE PHOTOS

2010

DR OON CHIEW SENG
HER WORLD SPECIAL AWARD
FOUNDER & CHAIRMAN, APEX HARMONY LODGE

2011/12

PROFESSOR IVY NG
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
GROUP CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, SINGHEALTH

2011/12

JANICE WONG
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
CHEF & OWNER OF 2AM:DESSERTBAR

2011/12

GALA DINNER
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR & YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER AWARDS
SEE PHOTOS & WATCH VIDEO

2013

ASSOC PROFESSOR LIM SWEE HIA
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
SENIOR DIRECTOR, SINGHEALTH-ALICE LEE IAN

2013

DR YEO SZE LING
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
RESEARCH SCIENTIST, A*STAR INSTITUTE FOR INFOCOMM RESEARCH

2013

GALA DINNER
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR & YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER AWARDS
SEE PHOTOS

2014

RACHEL ENG
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
JOINT MANAGING PARTNER, WONG PARTNERSHIP

2014

SIM CHI YIN
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
FREELANCE PHOTOGRAPHER

2014

GALA DINNER
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR & YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER AWARDS
SEE PHOTOS & WATCH VIDEO

2015

ZURAIDAH ABDULLAH
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
SENIOR ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER OF POLICE, SINGAPORE POLICE FORCE

2015

PRISCILLA SHUNMUGAM
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
FASHION DESIGNER, ONG SHUNMUGAM

2015

GALA DINNER
HER WORLD 55TH ANNIVERSARY & WOMAN OF THE YEAR AWARDS
SEE PHOTOS

2016

SUDHA NAIR
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF FAMILY VIOLENCE SPECIALIST CENTRE

2016

JENNY TAY
HER WORLD YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER
MANAGING DIRECTOR OF DIRECT FUNERAL SERVICES
2014
GALA DINNER
HER WORLD WOMAN OF THE YEAR & YOUNG WOMAN ACHIEVER AWARDS

SEE PHOTOS & WATCH VIDEO: A fond look back at a fabulous night given over to saluting two truly remarkable women that are your Her World Woman of the Year and Young Woman Achiever for 2014

On October 17, the Shangri-La Singapore ballroom was business as usual: A constellation of couture-clad society ladies and penguin suited gents. But over and above the fabulous frocks and champagne clinking, the evening was shot through with real heart, as Her World magazine toasted its new Woman of the Year and Young Woman Achiever for 2014.

Indeed, for all the pomp and pageantry, the night was far from stuffy. Instead, what stood out was a sense of all-abiding love for society and family, starting from the gala dinner’s Guest of Honour, Ms Sim Ann, Minister of State, Ministry of Education and Communications and Information.

Ms Sim Ann’s opening speech, for one, closed with a particularly poignant anecdote about her son: “One day, I received a handwritten letter mailed to my home. I almost never receive such letters anymore, so it really was quite a surprise. It turns out to have been from my 10-year-old son.”

“His Chinese teacher had given his class an assignment to write a letter to their parents and mail it home. And this is what he wrote to me: ‘Mama, I know that you are always very busy but I hope that you can rest more and take care of your health, so that you can help more people’. I thought I would share this little message to the women here today. We all work hard and are very busy; we’re passionate about doing our best work, and also we want to take the best possible care of our loved ones. I think we should all remember to take care of ourselves, too, because only that way can we continue to make a difference to others.” Really sweet, yes.

Then there’s the almost unbearably heartbreaking catalyst behind Her World Young Woman Achiever Sim Chi Yin’s pursuit of, as she puts it, a “meaningful way to live”. Speaking at the gala dinner, Chi Yin spoke of her incredibly moving family history: “Subconsciously perhaps, and in retrospect, another person influenced me from afar: My paternal grandfather.Living most of his life in Malaya, he stood up and spoke for his community during the Japanese Occupation and ended up being arrested and tortured by the Japanese.”

“He was later arrested by the British, chose deportation back to our ancestral village in east Guangdong and joined the Chinese Communist guerilla army up the hills, fighting for what must have been his ideal: A fairer society. In July 1949, he was unlucky to run into some rival Nationalist KMT soldiers and was later killed in a mass execution. He left a heartbroken wife and five young children behind in Malaya, his death a pivot in the family’s life.”

The rest – Chi Yin’s quest to document the disenfranchised in society through the compassionate filter of her camera lens – is history, as they say, and the reason why she’s Her World’s Young Woman Achiever for 2014.

As for Her World Woman of the Year, Rachel Eng – advocate for gender diversity in the workplace, managing partner of a leading legal firm and smasher of what was once considered an impenetrable glass ceiling – she says her hubby is her constant cheerleader: “Dennis encourages me to push myself to the fullest. He supports me when I am offered a promotion, he allows me to continue travelling during pregnancy, and he doesn’t stop me when I travel to any remote country for work. Whenever I am called away for urgent work, he and my children will try to work their schedule around mine.”

You know what they say: Behind every successful woman …

At the end of the evening, I was left with a good sense of just who Rachel Eng and Sim Chi Yin were: Singaporean sisters bound by a soul-stirring sense of commitment to doing what they know to be right. Incredible individuals in their own right, and well deserving of their newly minted status.

Congrats, both! We’ll sign off with this video retrospective of the awards ceremony—with a little extra by way of our champs revealing their pick for personal woman of the year thrown in for good measure!