Lawyer Remy Choo Zheng Xi has become the first Singaporean to clinch the International Bar Association's (IBA) Outstanding Young Lawyer of the Year Award. Mr Choo, 30, was presented with his prize at the association's annual conference in Washington, DC, last Monday.
The IBA was founded in 1947 and has over 80,000 members from more than 160 countries. The award is open to all lawyers under 35 and recognises their professional excellence, ethical reputation and community service.
Mr Choo, a director at Peter Low LLC, was nominated by the firm's founder and managing director, Mr Peter Cuthbert Low. Mr Choo's award citation commended him for his work in the "unpopular and challenging area of human rights litigation".
He has been involved in cases such as teenager Benjamin Lim's death amid a police investigation, blogger Alex Au's charges of contempt of court and the Section 377A constitutional challenge.
Mr Choo wrote on Facebook that he hoped his win would show young lawyers that professional success and a positive social impact were not mutually exclusive goals. "Being the first Singaporean to win this award is particularly special to me," he said. "So for the IBA newsletter I picked a photo taken on Cavenagh Bridge, with a uniquely Singapore bumboat passing by."
Last year, he was named the civil society advocate of the year at the Singapore Advocacy Awards. The son of a chef, Mr Choo is a foodie and writes the occasional food review, according to his firm's website.