Achievement
Being the first female appointed as the secretary-general of the Securities and Exchange Commission
Hospitality
Ruenvadee Suwanmongkol
Secretary-general of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Education

  • LLB, first-class honours and gold medal, Chulalongkorn University
  • Barrister-at-law, Legal Training Institute, Thai Bar Association
  • LLM, international business law, Harvard Law School
  • Master of Business Administration, Haas School of Business, University of California at Berkeley

Career

  • 2019-present : Secretary-general, Securities and Exchange Commission
  • 2019-present : Member, Law Development Committee, Council of State
  • 2019-present : Director, Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives
  • 2019-present : Director, Dhanarak Asset Development Co., Ltd.
  • 2014-19 : Director-general, Legal Execution Department, Justice Ministry
  • 2012-14 : Director-general, Probation Department, Justice Ministry
  • 2010-12 : Inspector, Justice Ministry
  • 2008-10 : Deputy director-general, Justice Aairs Oce, and deputy director-general, Rights and Liberties Protection Department, Justice Ministry
  • 2006-08 : Director, legal division, Permanent Secretary's Oce, Justice Ministry
  • 2004-06 : Legal adviser, Permanent Secretary's Oce, Justice Ministry
  • 1992-2004 : Various posts, Securities and Exchange Commission
“ It’s a matter of whether you can do it or not, no matter you are a male or female. ”

Ruenvadee Suwanmongkol

Steady as she goes

As the first female head of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Ruenvadee Sawanmongkol is guiding Thai capital markets into a new era of digitisation, while holding the markets steady amid unprecedented disruptions caused by everything from viruses to blockchains.

Ms Ruenvadee returned to the organisation that kick-started her career in 2019 when she was appointed secretary-general of the SEC. She has a mandate to ensure regulatory compliance from all market participants and strengthen investor confidence in the organisation's protections and fairness.

While being the first female regulator of the traditionally male-dominated financial market can seem like a challenge, Ms Ruenvadee welcomes the opportunity to usher in change.

She said when given the opportunity, whoever is in a leadership position, regardless of gender, needs to carry out his or her duty to the utmost and fully commit to the job.

Although she has from "time to time" and "job to job'' encountered gender-based obstacles, she says she has always managed to overcome through confidence and dedication.

To her, gender is no obstacle.

In fact, she believes some traditionally feminine traits like empathy, prudence and an ability to listen with patience and compassion make women a great fit for leading roles.

"People have some doubts about women being decisive and sometimes male [leaders] may have more rapid decision-making ability, but women can also do that, although in a cautious manner," she said.

She attributes her confidence and independence to a progressive upbringing by her parents who always encourage her to freely choose her areas of study and make her own decisions regarding her career.

Her parents' commitment to her education is reflected in her impressive credentials with degrees in law and business from prestigious institutions such as Chulalongkorn University, the University of California, Berkeley, and Harvard University.

Her experience in the public sector has forged her a strong public service mindset.

Ms Ruenvadee says civil servants need to constantly improve themselves and think about how they can be a "givers" and contribute to the well-being of the people they serve.

As the secretary-general of the SEC, she aims to increase the public’s financial literacy and improve financial inclusivity to make sure women and marginalised groups have equal access to a safe and sustainable investment in an increasingly digitalised world.

She says Thailand is an open society with ample opportunities for women and urges any Thai women aspiring to be leaders to be confident and work hard to deliver what is expected.

While she hopes to see Thai women reaching for the stars, she also doesn't want them to forget who they are.

"The opportunity is there, and every [woman] can do as she dreams but one thing to remember [is that] we are still Thai women," she said.

"I want to end by saying that, please do treasure the value of Thai culture."