Her Excellency, Datin Paduka Seri Rosmah Mansor,
Wife of the Prime Minister of Malaysia
Datin Paduka Seri Rosmah Mansor was born in Kuala Pilah, Negeri Sembilan on December 10th 1951. A daughter to educators, she had her secondary schooling at the Tunku Kurshiah College, a prestigious boarding school for bright Malay girls in Malaysia. She is the wife to Dato Sri Mohd Najib bin Tun Hj Abd Razak. Her husband credits his wife for not just giving her home and family life as much care and attention as possible but been instrumental in supplying pivotal support to her husband’s leadership of Malaysia. while delivering his closing speech at UMNO 67th annual general meeting, December 2013 in Dewan Merdeka, Putra World Trade Centre, President Najib Razak praised his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor for her “good deeds” to the country. In the speech at the general assembly, he highlighted two instances where Rosmah helped Malaysia; an instance where the wife of the Prime Minister was instrumental in releasing a student detained in Egypt; and during Malaysia’s Operation Pyramid in Saudi Arabia, the government requested to get out Malaysian students without visa. She used her diplomatic connections and got the students out with The Saudi government offering two jumbo jets to help us extract the students.
After completing her tertiary and higher education at University Malaya and Louisiana State University in 1974 and 1978 respectively, Datin Paduka Seri Rosmah Mansor returned to launch her corporate career, putting to good use her Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Anthropology and her Masters degree in Sociology and Agriculture Extension. She served at Agriculture Bank Malaysia until 1983, and then took on the position of Business Development Manager at Island and Peninsular Berhad where she served until 1987.
Today, as the wife of the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Datin Paduka Seri Rosmah Mansor wears many hats. She is the President of the Welfare Association of Minister’s Wives (BAKTI). She holds the position of Patron for various associations, among others are Children in Hope Foundation, Malaysian Nature Society, Society of the Orthopedically Handicapped Malaysia, Malaysia Aids Council, National Heart Institute Foundation, Thalasemia Association, National Athletes’ Welfare Association, the Foundation for the Development of Underprivileged Children and many more. She is also on the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) as their patron, as well as the President of the Girl Guides Association of Malaysia. The Prime Minister’s wife, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, in June 2014 hosted a Malaysian fashion show in conjunction with the 2014 Global Summit of Women which showcased Malaysia’s traditional and unique textiles. In her speech, Rosmah said she hoped the effort would be well received and appreciated, especially by the French fashion houses and expressed her delight at showcasing unique Malaysian styles and heritage in fashion at Paris.
Datin Paduka Seri Rosmah Mansor strongly believes that human capital development begins with children and it is an important investment for the nation. This will lay a firm foundation for national growth, productivity, social cohesion and peace. She has thus been active in driving this initiative through the PERMATA programmes starting with nationwide establishment of early childhood education and care centres or Permata Negara that focuses on children below 5 years. Through her effort, to date, more than 650 Permata Negara Centers have been set up throughout the country.
This programme has since been widened to the intellectually gifted children under the banner of PERMATA Pintar, aimed at providing appropriate enriched learning environment to challenge them to the fullest potential. This programme offers two approaches, the annual school camp for children aged 9-15 and a school for gifted children aged 16-17 at the National University of Malaysia (UKM). As for PERMATA Seni, the objective is to further refine the talents of children in performing arts i.e: music, choir and dance. Whilst for PERMATA Insan, the gifted children are provided with an early exposure to the understanding of a-Quran and as-Sunnah in order to groom them to be future Islamic intellectuals.
As a means to reach out to the youth especially those at risk she initiated the Perkasa Remaja via camp intervention and Community based programmes. These two programmes are aimed at empowering youth to be into the mainstream development.
She is now embarking on two new projects; the PEMATA Kurnia, a programme for children with autism and Children Specialist Hospital. Both projects are in the process of implementation.
Other than her involvement in the welfare of children, she is also passionate in advancing women related issues, such as empowerment of women, gender equality and uplifting the economic status of women. She has been invited on numerous occasions to speak on these issues at conferences both locally and internationally.
In recognition for her many contribution to the country and its people, Datin Paduka Seri Rosmah Mansor has been conferred various high awards from the States of Pahang, Kedah, Melaka, Selangor, Kelantan, Negeri Sembilan, Sabah and Sarawak. She was also awarded an honorary Doctorate in Education by University Technology MARA Malaysia, the Honorary Doctorate of Innovation in Human Capacity Development by Limkokwing University of Creative Technology and the Honorary Doctorate in Early Childhood Education by Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris (UPSI). Her contribution was also acknowledged internationally with the award for Social Responsibility from the city of Ankara, Turkey. She was also conferred with the Honorary Doctorate of Letters by Australia’s Curtin University and Professorship by the International Information Technology University, Kazakhstan.
Rosmah Mansor has been awarded numerous awards, title and recognition from local and overseas institution. One of the most prominent awards that she had received is the Peace and Harmony Awards from the Business Council for International Understanding from the United States of America on 17 April 2010. This award was conferred to Rosmah Mansor by the former US Secretary Lawrence Eagleburger. The event was held at the famous St. Regis Hotel.
On 2 March 2012, Rosmah was bestowed the Distinguished Service Medal from Stevens Institute of Technology president Dr. Nariman Farvardin in New Jersey, in recognition of her public service, especially in the areas of empowering women and gender equality, and the important role she plays in encouraging early education among Malaysians.
Recently, she was conferred with the Honorary Life Member by the Women’s Institute of Management (WIM).
In December 2013, Centre for Economic and Leadership Leadership (CELD), recognised Rosmah Mansor’s high commitment, role and initiatives on women and children’s development by honouring her with ‘Global Inspirational Leadership’ award (GILa) at the Africa-Middle East-Asia Amazons Awards Gala in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.