MDEC appoints four new key industry players to its board


Four industry trailblazers have been appointed to the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) Board of Directors. These game changing appointments will recalibrate and bolster the board’s breadth of expertise to critical digital technologies such as Data &  AI, Digital Transformation and Entrepreneurship, and Governance. 

“Assembling  this incredible breadth of industry trailblazers to serve on our board will strengthen the depth and  breadth of our expertise to benefit rural and urban needs, while accelerating our positioning as the  ‘Heart of Digital Asean’,” said Chairman of MDEC, Datuk Wira Dr. Hj. Rais Hussin Mohamed Ariff. “The globally-recognised track record of these accomplished leaders provides MDEC and all of our  stakeholders with deep sector expertise, high performance leadership and effective governance and the new board members will also empower our efforts to harness opportunities in the next normal,  benefitting MSMEs, gig workers, MNCs and the public sector alike.”  

The four new members will complement the seven current board members, working alongside MDEC’s  CEO, Surina Shukri, and the management team to spearhead the agency’s goal to reinvent  its approach towards growth of digitally-skilled Malaysians, digitally-powered businesses and digital  investments to achieve the Shared Prosperity 2030 agenda. 

The four new appointees are:

  1. Aireen Omar 

Aireen is currently President (Air Asia Digital), AirAsia Group where she is responsible for its  digital strategy, promoting innovation throughout the group and encouraging collaboration across  AirAsia’s businesses and markets. 

She oversees large, digital strategic group-wide initiatives o help transform AirAsia Group into a global,  cloud and data driven, and platform company. At RedBeat Ventures, Aireen is also pivotal in incubating  and growing the digital and fintech businesses such as BigLife, BigPay, Teleport, Santan, and in  transforming airasia.com into more than just an airline platform.  

She is an Economics graduate of the London School of Economics and Political Science and holds a  Masters in Economics from New York University. 

  1. Dr Dhesi Baha 

Dhesi holds a Master of Public Health and DrPH (Doctor of Public Health) and is passionate  about Data Science and Artificial Intelligence. One of his key contributions to Malaysia was i-Kelahiran,  a software that organizes birth data, immunization coverage & tracks high risk pregnancies in real time.  The technology was then implemented in government hospitals and clinics around Malaysia.

Pursuant to winning first prize in the Global Impact Competition, he was  sponsored to the Singularity University in Silicon Valley where he co-founded  Artificial Intelligence in Medical Epidemiology, a software that has the  capability of identifying deadly outbreaks 3 month in advance & geo-locating them up to 400 meter  

radius. His work in AI & Infectious Disease has received various international acknowledgement,  recently winning the top prize for the Pistoia life science innovations Award in King’s College London,  Top 10 exceptional solution award by the United Nations in 2016 and Top 10 Under 35 Innovators  Award by MIT in 2017.  

He was also invited by the Honorable Chancellor of Germany, Madam Angela Merkel to share his  expertise on AI for Antimicrobial resistance and the use of technology to solve global grand challenges  in Germany. Dr Dhesi is one of the experts that drafted the use of technology to achieve the Sustainable  Development Goals for the United Nations in an expert panel meeting in New York & Geneva.  

  1. Farouk Peter Lee 

Farouk has an extensive career with global multinational companies and is currently the  Asia Market General Manager for AXA Group Operations, responsible for managing the delivery of IT  shared services (Infrastructure and Application) for AXA businesses across Asia. Lee is also the  Chairman of AXA Group Operations Hong Kong, and an Executive Board Member of AXA Group  Operations Malaysia and AXA Group Operations Philippines. 

He has more than 25 years of experience leading and driving operational and IT enabled change in  Insurance and Banking industry across Asia, specifically in Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia,  South Korea, and China (including Hong Kong). Lee has held leadership roles in Accenture, DXC  Technologies, New York Life Insurance, Zurich Insurance, MetLife, and AXA.  

He received his Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Electrical Engineering from Brown University, USA. 

  1. Jaleeludeen Abu Baker 

Jaleeludeen is currently Director of Legal & Administration at AHB International Berhad  and was the Executive Director of Antah Holdings Berhad. He was part of the team entrusted to  undertake Antah Group’s turnaround and corporate restructuring. The task also involved addressing  and rectifying the various corporate governance issues faced. He also undertook a comprehensive  legal and corporate review of its investment portfolios and led dispute resolutions.  

He is also a Director at SAB Global, owner and manager of Axiom Learning and Child Enhancement  center in Malaysia. He has previously held leadership roles in the licensed money services business,  having represented the Malaysian money-changing industry at the 2014 Mutual Evaluation Report on  anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing measures in Malaysia. 

Jaleeludeen holds a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) (Honours) from the International Islamic University,  Malaysia and was admitted as an Advocate & Solicitor, High Court of Malaya in 1995. In addition, he  is a Trust Officer approved by the Labuan Financial Services Authority (Labuan FSA), a licensed  Company Secretary and a Committee Member of the Institute of Approved Company Secretaries  (IACS).  

These four new board appointees follow the earlier appointments of Lee Chin Cheh and Associate  Professor Dr. Muhammad Abdullah Zaidel as Non-Executive Independent Directors. The other serving  board members include Pn. Afidah Azwa Abdul Aziz, Professor Dato’ Dr. Halimah Badioze Zaman,  Mohd Yuzaidi Mohd Yusoff.