Ex-NTUC Link head is new Minds chief exec

"Social impact is something I feel very passionate about," said Mr Tony Tan, who feels his more than seven years at social enterprise NTUC Link would come in handy.
"Social impact is something I feel very passionate about," said Mr Tony Tan, who feels his more than seven years at social enterprise NTUC Link would come in handy.ST PHOTO: NG SOR LUAN

Top of his agenda: How Minds can service its 2,400 beneficiaries throughout their lives

Former NTUC Link chief executive Tony S. Tan was yesterday revealed as the new CEO of Movement of the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore (Minds). Mr Tan, 53, started on May 22 and replaces Mr Keh Eng Song, 62, who retired last month after 10 years helming the voluntary welfare organisation.

Top of Mr Tan's agenda is to look at how Minds can service its 2,400 beneficiaries throughout their lives.

"A lot of services provided tend to look at a person in separated ways: Youth, then adulthood. But you have to look at it as a whole continuum," he said.

Mr Tan wants to see how Minds can "smoothen out all the transitions to help persons with intellectual disabilities transition well into adulthood".

He will share more specific details at a later date, but said one thing Minds will work on is in finding more work opportunities.

Apart from placing clients in open employment, Minds has also been testing out new businesses that it hopes to run as social enterprises.

For example, it is dabbling in farming and hydroponics, and has started its students on growing vegetables.

This is also where Mr Tan feels his more than seven years at NTUC Link would come in handy.

The social enterprise manages a loyalty programme with two million members.

"Social impact is something I feel very passionate about," said Mr Tan, who is married to an art therapist, and has two adult sons.

Before NTUC Link, he spent two decades at multinational firms such as Bausch & Lomb where he was senior vice-president of Asia.

Minds president Jeffrey Tan said: "Being skilled in strategic transformation, commercial operations and delivering sustained financial improvement, I am confident Tony Tan will bring invaluable experience and expertise in leading Minds to new levels of success."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 02, 2017, with the headline 'Ex-NTUC Link head is new Minds chief exec'. Print Edition | Subscribe