Singapore's first female Permanent Secretary in public service to retire

Ms Lim Soo Hoon, chairman of the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (Acra), speaking at the CPA Congress on Oct 11, 2012.
Ms Lim Soo Hoon, chairman of the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (Acra), speaking at the CPA Congress on Oct 11, 2012. PHOTO: CPA AUSTRALIA

SINGAPORE - After serving in the public sector for 36 years, Singapore's first female Permanent Secretary will be retiring from the administrative service.

Ms Lim Soo Hoon, Permanent Secretary (Finance) (Performance) at the Ministry of Finance, will retire on April 30, the Prime Minister's Office said in a press release on Tuesday (April 4).

After her retirement, the 58-year-old will continue to contribute to the public sector as a senior fellow of the Civil Service College. She will also continue as chairman of the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (Acra) Board.

Ms Lim served in various capacities in the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the Ministry of Communications and Information and the former Ministry of Labour.

She made history in 1999 when she became the first female officer to be Permanent Secretary of the Singapore Public Service.

As Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Community Development, she strengthened social policies and spearheaded programmes such as the Singapore Sports School and the development of policies to promote pro-family practices.

She held several roles in her distinguished career, helping set key human resource policies for the public sector as Permanent Secretary (Public Service Division), Prime Minister's Office, in 2005.

In this role, she helped establish milestone development programmes for senior leaders, roll out re-employment policies for older workers, and looked at job redesign to help provide junior staff with more employable skills.

She was also on the Diversity Action Committee, which was formed in 2014 to push for more women on company boards.

Ms Lim also contributed to the adding of more digital services in the Public Service and helped promote more data sharing within the Government and with the public.

For her contributions to public service, Ms Lim was awarded the Silver Public Administration Medal in 1998 and the Gold Public Administration Medal in 2004.

After she steps down, Mrs Tan Ching Yee will be the only Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance.