Another feather in Seow's cap with V-P nod

Fencing and bowling chiefs Juliana Seow (left) and Jessie Phua were voted vice-presidents of the Singapore National Olympic Council yesterday. ST FILE PHOTOS
Fencing and bowling chiefs Juliana Seow (above) and Jessie Phua were voted vice-presidents of the Singapore National Olympic Council yesterday.ST FILE PHOTO
Fencing and bowling chiefs Juliana Seow (left) and Jessie Phua were voted vice-presidents of the Singapore National Olympic Council yesterday. ST FILE PHOTOS
Fencing and bowling chiefs Juliana Seow and Jessie Phua (above) were voted vice-presidents of the Singapore National Olympic Council yesterday.ST FILE PHOTO

Juliana Seow has worn many hats in sport - from national fencer to coach to president of Fencing Singapore - and she hopes her experience will help her in her new role as vice-president of the Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC).

The 48-year-old said: "Whatever position I'm in, I'll always want to contribute and make sport a better place.

"I've been an athlete and a coach so I know what it feels like and I hope with my experience, I can empathise with every situation and find a win-win solution."

Seow and Singapore Bowling Federation chief Jessie Phua were elected vice-presidents at the SNOC's virtual annual general meeting (AGM) last night.

Phua was defending her seat while the other post had been vacated by Dr Tan Eng Liang, who stood down after 28 years of service.

The other candidate in the race was former sepak takraw president Abdul Halim Kader.

Phua and Seow will serve until 2024, joining incumbent vice-presidents Benedict Tan and Milan Kwee, who were elected at the 2018 AGM and will serve till 2022.

The AGM was held via video conferencing because of Covid-19 restrictions and was attended by 225 representatives from 54 national sports associations (NSAs).

Seow paid tribute to Dr Tan, saying yesterday: "I hope I can be as effective as Dr Tan, who has been a great role model.

"He can be tough and strict but he's also very caring and empathetic. He's a very hands-on person who always looks to find the root of the problem.

"I have many role models including Jessie and Milan and I hope to learn the best from everyone and create a unique identity for myself, but what's more important is I want sport to become a greater passion for us.

  • 2020-21 SNOC EXCO

  • PRESIDENT Tan Chuan-Jin

    IOC MEMBER Ng Ser Miang

    VICE-PRESIDENTS Milan Kwee, Benedict Tan, Jessie Phua, Juliana Seow

    HONORARY TREASURER Edwin Lee

    MEMBERS Lawrence Leow

    (CO-OPTED) MEMBERS Lim Teck Yin, Tan Chen Kee, Mark Chay (Athletes' Commission), Lau Kok Keng

    SECRETARY-GENERAL (EX-OFFICIO) Chris Chan

    ASSISTANT SECRETARY-GENERAL (EX-OFFICIO) Edmund Lim

"I truly believe that sport helps to build character, especially in these circumstances when we need a lot of resilience to push ourselves through."

Phua, who has been in the seat since 2014, added that the biggest challenge for most NSAs now is how to maintain interest in their respective sports during the Covid-19 pandemic.

"Now it's for our colleagues in the sporting community to collectively get over this and meet this challenge," said the 65-year-old.

"It's up to us how we can be more creative to keep the engagement there and to keep people enthused so that when the light at the end of tunnel gets bigger and brighter, we can emerge and hit the ground running.

"I hope sport will continue to be the unifier that brings all Singaporeans together."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 24, 2020, with the headline 'Another feather in Seow's cap with V-P nod'. Print Edition | Subscribe