WHO WE ARE

The U Thant House Trust is a registered Myanmar non-governmental organization set up in 2012 by the family of U Thant. The Trust has been the official caretaker of the property since then. U Thant’s daughter, Daw Aye Aye Thant, serves as patron of the U Thant House Trust, which is managed by a board chaired by Dr. Thant Myint-U, historian and grandson of U Thant.

Trustees:

  • Patron: Daw Aye Aye Thant, daughter of U Thant.

  • ChairmanDr. Thant Myint-U, historian, writer, and former Fellow, Trinity College, Cambridge. Founder and Chairman of Yangon Heritage Trust, Former Chief of Policy Planning, United Nations. Department of Political Affairs, has served with three UN peacekeeping operations.

  • Dr. Thant Thaw Kaung, Executive Director of Myanmar Book Center and its philanthropic arm the Myanmar Book Aid and Preservation Foundation dedicated to develop public libraries in Myanmar. Executive Committee Member of Daw Khin Kyi Foundation chaired by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.

  • Daw Pyone Kathy Naing, Member of Parliament Lower House (Pyithu Hluttaw) representing Kalaw constituency and member of the International Relations Parliamentary Committee and the Asian Inter-Parliamentary Assembly Committee. Formerly director principle of Kanbawza Private High School. Previously held posts with INGOs in the fields of Education, Public Health, Small Industries and Agriculture in 1997-2004. Graduated from Yangon University with a major in English Literature and has participated in exchanges and study tours in Israel, Japan and the USA.​

  • Daw Yin Myo Su, Founder of Inle Heritage Foundation and MD of Inle Princess Resort, Chairperson of the Inle Heritage Hospitality Vocational Training Center and an advocate for sustainable and responsible development practices that brings both social and economic benefit to local communities and ensures the preservation of the fragile, cultural heritage of Inle Lake and Shan State. Recipient of several local and international awards in recognition of her work in hospitality, heritage preservation, women’s empowerment and leadership.

  • Executive DirectorMs. Sofia Busch, Founder of the Beyond Ceasefires Initiative (Myanmar), formerly held senior positions with the World Bank and the United Nations in Political Affairs in New York, peace support mission in Nepal, and at UNESCAP in Bangkok. She received her academic training at Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs and Uppsala University and holds a Master’s Degree in Peace and Conflict Research.

Advisory Board:​​

  • Daw Chaw Kalyar, Principal Architect at Statement Architecture+Design, holds a MSc inArchitecture and Environmental Design of Buildings from Cardiff University, UK, and a BA fromYangon Institute of Technology and has been working as an architect since 2001. She is an EC member of the Myanmar Building Engineering Institute’ s Green Building Committee tasked with policy development, and a Board Member of the Yangon Heritage Trust.

 

  • Daw Melinda Tun, a Myanmar-born lawyer who specializes in corporate and commercial law. She is a Partner in Opade Partners and has advised large multinational companies in the Asia-Pacific region on major corporate transactions. She holds degrees in Economics and Law (Honours) from the University of Sydney and is admitted to legal practice in Australia. She has been managing law and regulatory reform programs for the Asia Development Bank in Myanmar since 2014.

  • U Min Zin, Executive Director of the Institute for Strategy and Policy - Myanmar, an NGO and think-tank working to promote strengthened democratic leadership and civic participation. Min Zin specializes in civil-military relations, democratization, ethnic conflicts and civil war and has been published by Foreign Policy Magazine, The New York Times, and is a contributor to Journal of Democracy, Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs, and many edited volumes. He is a Ph. D. candidate in Travers Department of Political Science at University of California, Berkeley.

  • U Zaw Oo, Executive Director of the Centre for Economic and Social Development, an independent think-tank dedicated to inclusive development in Myanmar. He was Presidential Economic Advisor from 2012-2016 and contributed to the 2012 strategic policy framework that guided comprehensive economic and social reforms in Myanmar and subsequently he negotiated the historic agreement of the Paris Club to cancel 60% (US$6 billion) of Myanmar’s debt. He currently serves on the National Minimum Wage Setting Committee. He holds graduate degrees from Columbia University and American University in international development, finance and banking, and political economy and certificates from Harvard University and Turin University.

  • U Pyi Wa Tun (Ken), Chairman and CEO of Parami Energy, holds an MBA from National University of Singapore and Bachelor of Engineering from Yangon Institute of Technology. Founder of the Pyin Nyaw DaYa Foundation supporting 1500 monastic community schools and over 300,000 children in rural Myanmar. Ken Tun was named a “philanthropist hero” by Forbes Magazine in 2017.

  • Daw Zarchi Tin is the CEO and board director of Dai-ichi Life Insurance Myanmar, and member of the Dai-ichi Life Group's Global Leadership Committee. Zarchi has over 20 years of professional experience in international and Myanmar corporations, such as BNP Paribas investment bank, Central Bank of Canada, Yoma Bank and First Myanmar Investment Co Ltd (FMI) and has held various board roles across sectors. She holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Financial Strategy from the University of Oxford, an MBA in Finance from the University of Ottawa, and a BA in Economics from Vesalius College in Belgium.

  • Daw Khin Sanda Win, Founder and MD of Sanda Group of Companies comprising Sanda Hotel & Service, Inle Lake View Resort & Spa, The Loft Yangon and SandaTour. Chairperson of the Myanmar Business Forum for the Hospitality and Tourism Industry. Founder of a vocational training school dedicated to training young people from remote areas for employment in the hospitality sector.

 

Staff:

 

  • Senior Finance Officer: Daw Yoon Wah Phyo received her Bachelor of Arts (Economics) from West University of Yangon (2012), and holds additional diplomas in Accounting (IAS) and in Financial and Management Accounting (UK). Previously she worked as Finance Officer with Turquoise Mountain, and Finance and Administration Officer with Myanmar School of Politics and Finance Assistant with Land Core Group. In her spare time, she continues to study for specialized accounting diplomas.

  • Museum CoordinatorDaw (Pinky) Htet Myo Htut Aung, received her Bachelor of Science (Hons) from the University of Greenwich (U.K.) and is an active musician and artist since 2013. Pinky comes from a family of musicians and has trained with Gitameit Music Center and Academy of Rock in Yangon. She speaks Burmese, English, French and Japanese fluently.

  • Program Coordinator: Daw Su Nwe (Luna), holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Yangon University of Economics and completed her MBA in 2017 from the same university. She has worked with various business organizations and NGOs as a freelance translator and research assistant since 2014. As a writer, she has written over 100 articles in local newspapers and journals and published two article collection books. 

  • Program Coordinator: Daw May Nadi Kyaw holds a BA in Southeast Asian Studies and minor in Japanese Language (First Class Honors) from Mahidol University (Thailand). Previously she worked as a lead researcher with Koe Koe Tech Social Enterprise and as a researcher with Center for Diversity and National Harmony (CDNH). Fluent in Burmese and English, she also speaks Japanese, Korean and Thai.

  • Volunteer: (Fmr Program Coordinator) Daw Khin Htet Htet Lwin, holds a Bachelor's Degree in Business Management and Marketing from the   University of the West of England. Previously she worked as a content developer at Geek Girls Myanmar and as a marketing intern at Rocket Internet Myanmar. Passionate about children’s learning and she has volunteered with many organisations in the field of non-formal education including the British Council Library and the Dhammdutah (Mawbi).

  • Volunteer: Daw Shine Min Tun, Coordinator at Ava Advisory Group, holds a Master of Business Administration from Yangon University’s Department of Economics. Previously she worked as Network Coordinator at Willis Tower Watson. Shine served as one of the first guides at U Thant House and has appeared in many broadcasts about U Thant House.

  • Museum Educator (Volunteer): Ms. Alison Chugg is a UK and global citizen, a lifelong educator and learner. For the past two decades, she has been a practicing teacher and educational leader who has worked with schools and organisations in Egypt, Hong Kong, China, India, and the UK. She studied geography and continues her interest in people, places, maps and cities. She is passionate about global citizenship and empowering future generations to assume active roles in building more peaceful and tolerant societies. Alison has been living in Myanmar since August 2018 and working as an educational consultant for U Thant House since October 2018.

  • Organisational Development (Volunteer): Ms. Stephanie Bleeker (Netherlands) is a Global Health professional and passionate about the power of art and design. She holds a Master’s degree in Global Health and Development Studies/ Medical Sociology.  She has worked in various positions in the United Nations, the Red Cross Society, the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs and research and civil society organisations. Stephanie lives in Yangon since 2016 and continues her consulting work in Global Health and is also founder and board member of the Netherlands School Yangon.