Melissa Kwee's career has spanned the public, private and community sectors as anthropologist, researcher, educational programme designer, social innovator and now as a catalyst in the private sector. She has worked in villages, urban areas, schools, shelters and board rooms to gather talent that will create new possibilities for more humane education, community participation and inclusive economic opportunity.
She began as a 21-year-old idealistic social entrepreneur fresh from a fellowship in the Himalayas. Upon return to Singapore, she started Project Access; a values-based leadership education initiative to inspire and equip girls and young women to be role models and catalysts for positive change. She pioneered service learning programmes in schools and has since served as Chairman of Halogen Foundation, a youth leadership organisation, President of UN Women Singapore (formerly Unifem Singapore) as an advocate and community mobiliser tackling trafficking issues and building support for the protection of migrant workers, and initiated various community projects and campaigns engaging and empowering youth as advocates and educators.
She was recognised with the Singapore Youth Award in 2007, Asean Youth Award 2008, and received several other awards for leadership and service. She is currently devoting her energies towards developing a family of mentors to teenage girls in residential rehabilitation through Beautiful People, a programme of Beyond Social Services. She was educated at Harvard College and was a Fulbright Scholar to Nepal. She presently serves as Chairman of the investment firm for Capella Singapore and Vice President, Human Capital, at Pontiac Land Group. She is an avid reader, traveller and aunt of twins.