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Tan Sri G Gnanalingam
Executive Chairman
Westports Malaysia

Tan Sri G Gnanalingam is the Executive Chairman of Westports Malaysia. An alumnus of the Royal Military College, he is a graduate of the University of Malaya and Harvard Business School, Boston. Since 1994, he has been at the helm of Westports as Executive Chairman, and has been responsible for infusing a new dynamism into the port business, revolutionizing the port industry with his innovative concepts of Fastport Standards, Gardenport and Flexiport. Tan Sri Gnanalingam is known for his trademark management style which includes leaving no stone unturned, initiating mind-shifts and quantum leaps, adopting a gung-ho work style, instilling innovative thinking and creative ideas. Tan Sri Gnanalingam has received numerous accolades and awards for his dedicated service to the industry and the Nation.

Dato' Sri Edmund Santhara
Group Chief Executive Officer
Masterskill Education Group Berhad

Dato’ Sri Edmund Santhara is the Group Chief Executive Officer and Director of Masterskill. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Strategic Marketing from Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia. He holds a Masters in Business Administration, and is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Business Administration at the University of Newcastle, Australia. In 2007, Dato’ Sri Edmund received the Malaysian Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

Dr Shamala Devi Sekaran
Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Malaya

Dr Shamala Devi Sekaran is a Professor of Medical Mircobiology at the Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Malaya. Thanks to Prof Shamala, dengue fever that has always been a threat to Malaysians, can now be diagnosed almost immediately. She invented the dengue diagnostic kit, which allows rapid detection, stereotyping and quantification of the dengue virus. In 2008, Prof Shamala was honored with the Woman BioInnovator of the Year Award by BioMalaysia.

Dato' AK Nathan
Group Managing Director and Chairman
Eversendai Corporation

Dato' AK Nathan is the Chairman & Group Managing Director of Eversendai Corporation Sdn Bhd. His company is a reputable player in the fabrication, design and erection of steel structures, and was involved in the construction of iconic landmarks such as the Petronas Twin Towers, the Burj al-Arab Hotel in Dubai and the Burj Khalifa, currently the world’s tallest building. He started work as a printing machine operator and subsequently as an Insurance Agent. With no formal education in engineering, Dato’ Nathan has grown Eversendai to where it is today, with sheer hard work, perseverance and persistence. In 2008, Dato' Nathan received the Malaysian Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

Dato' Ambiga Sreenevasan
Immediate Past President
Bar Council Malaysia

Dato' Ambiga Sreenevasan is the Immediate Past President of the Malaysian Bar Council. She joined the legal fraternity in 1982. She is the second female Bar Council President in the organization’s history and was elected Bar Council President two years in a row from 2007. Dato' Ambiga was recently honored with the 2009 Secretary of State Award for International Women of Courage by the U.S. Department of State.

Dato' Vijay Eswaran
Executive Chairman
QI Group of Companies

Dato' Vijay Eswaran is the Executive Chairman of QI Group of Campanies. He is not just a successful entrepreneur who founded a multimillion dollar global conglomerate, but also a bestselling author and a well known speaker. The QI Group, co-founded by Dato' Vijay in 1998 is an e-commerce-based conglomerate with businesses diversified into retail, travel & leisure, telecommunications, luxury products, health & wellness, training & education, technology, and corporate investments.

Forum Panelists
Mr Mohamed Bashir Shariff
Managing Director Palladium Consulting
Media and Venture Capital Advisors

Mr Mohamed Bashir Shariff brings over 25 years of experience in corporate finance, investment banking and venture capital. Specializing in the financial services industry, he has advised companies from the USA, Australia, India and Europe on doing business in Asia. As the Managing Director of Palladium Consulting and Advisor to USA-based Lowenhaupt Global Advisors, his extensive experience ensured the success of many wealthy Asian family businesses around the world. Mr Bashir is a popular speaker at conferences on mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, many aspects of media venture capital, and on how to manage growth internationally.

Miss Vanajah Siva
Malaysian Astronaut Program Finalist

Miss Vanajah Siva is a qualified engineer and is currently attached to Measat Satellite Systems. In 2006, she was selected for the National Astronaut Program by the Malaysian National Space Agency (ANGKASA). As the first woman among Malaysia's top four astronaut candidates, her stories not only inspired Malaysian youths to reach their dreams but also gave them a sense of belief that anything is possible with hard work and dedication. Miss Vanajah is a certified corporate trainer, and a motivational/inspirational speaker. She regularly conducts coaching sessions geared toward teenage excellence.

Mr Samuel J Dass
Sitar Maestro

Mr Samuel J Dass, an award-winning performer, started playing Sitar at the tender age of 7. He joined the Temple of Fine Arts Malaysia, where he learnt the finer nuances of this traditional art-form. In 2004, he won the Cameronian Arts Award for Best Original Composition and Best Solo Performance. In 2006, he won seven gold medals at the World Championship of Performing Arts in Los Angeles, USA. Mr Samuel has performed in the USA, Australia, Singapore, Brunei and India. Recently, Mr Samuel opened the Samuel Dass School of Hindustani Music in Kuala Lumpur.
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