Simon Tay (b. 1961)
Simon Tay is a Singaporean law professor, author, and former Nominated Member of Parliament. Tay graduated with a LL.B (Honours) degree from the National University of Singapore (NUS) in 1986. During his time as an undergraduate, Tay served as the President of the NUS Students’ Union for three terms. In 1993, Tay went on to pursue a LL.M. from Harvard University as a Fulbright Scholar. There, he won the Laylin Prize in 1994 for the best graduate paper in Public International Law.
Tay has two collections of poetry; Prism (1980) and 5 (1985). His novel, City of Small Blessings (2009), won the 2010 Singapore Literature Prize, and his non-fiction book Asia Alone: The Dangerous Post-Crisis Divide from America (2009) was reviewed by The Economist and The Financial Times.
From 1986 to 1991, Tay began his career as a lawyer with Shook Lin & Bok, Advocates & Solicitors. There, he specialised in corporate litigation, advising corporate clients, including major banks and property companies. In 1989, Tay was also a columnist for The Sunday Times for two years. In 1991, Tay started the Singapore Volunteers Overseas (now known as Singapore International Volunteers), which recruits young volunteers to provide technical assistance in developing countries. In 1995, Tay was on the board of directors of the non-governmental, Singapore Environment Council. He remained on the board for eight years.
In 1997, Tay, nominated by the public, was selected by a special Parliamentary committee and appointed by the President of the Republic of Singapore to serve in parliament as one of nine non-elected and independent members of parliament. During his time as a Nominated Member of Parliament (NMP), Tay focused on issues relating to civil society, environment and human rights.
Tay is currently Associate Professor of Law at the National University of Singapore, Chairman of the Singapore Institute of International Affairs (an independent think tank) and Senior Consultant at WongPartnership LLP, a leading Asian law firm.
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