The wife of Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has joined the likes of Fidel Ramos, the former Philippines president and former Permodalan Nasional Bhd chairman Tun Ahmad Sarji Abdul Hamid, who have won the prestigious award.
Asia HRD Awards 2019, in a statement, said Dr Siti Hasmah was recognised for her "outstanding contribution towards the development of Malaysia's public health sector".
"Tun Siti Hasmah was a trailblazer in many ways, achieving many ‘firsts’ at the Ministry of Health.
"She served in various leadership positions, including President of the Malaysian Girl Guides Association, President of the Malaysian Medical Association Foundation and President of the Association for the Rehabilitation of Handicapped Children.
"She has received numerous honours and awards as appreciation for her unceasing effort and initiatives in the fields of public health, literacy and drug abuse control.
"She is a pioneer and an inspiring role model for women in Malaysia and around the world.
"She stands out as one person who has made a huge impact to the nation with her courage, tenacity and strength in character," the statement read.
The award is given to individuals who has dedicated their life towards the cause of learning and those who pioneered initiatives that impacted people in significant ways.
Dr Siti Hasmah received the award, the biggest of the night, at a grand awards ceremony held at Cyberjaya University College of Medical Sciences here.
In receiving her award, Dr Siti Hasmah said she credited her success and her contribution in the field of medicine to her late father, Mohd Ali Taib.
"My later father had a passion for education. He treated all his seven sons and three daughters equally, and put us all to school.
"He sent me to Singapore to study medicine and it was about that time I met a man named Mahathir Mohamad.
"But my father told me to forget about marriage and make sure I get qualified first. And I kept my promise.
"This award completed my father's dream to see his daughter succeed and serving the nation, so I wish he could see this," said Dr Siti Hasmah, in an emotional speech.
Later, a cake cutting ceremony was also held in conjunction with Dr Siti Hasmah's 93rd birthday, which fell on July 12.
Other award categories handed out last night were the 'Contribution to Society' award, 'Contribution to Organisation', 'Contribution to HR Community' and the 'Movers and Shakers' award.
In its 16th year, the Asia HRD Award honours individuals and human resources practitioners at all levels that significantly contributed to the human resources society.
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