Appointment of New Chief Executive at the Singapore Totalisator Board29 Mar 2023
1. The Minister for Finance has appointed Mr Tan Choon Shian as the next Chief Executive (CE) at the Singapore Totalisator Board (Tote Board). Mr Tan, who is currently the Chief Executive of Workforce Singapore (WSG), will take over from the incumbent CE, Mr Fong Yong Kian, on 1 July 2023. Mr Fong, who has served as CE since January 2014, will relinquish his appointment upon completion of his current term.
2. Under Mr Fong’s strong leadership, Tote Board has developed a more collaborative and outcomes-based approach to create greater social impact. Over the past nine years, Tote Board launched initiatives and strategic partnerships that not only met social needs, but also supported innovation. Key initiatives include the Enabling Lives Initiative Fund to improve the wellbeing of persons with disabilities and programmes to nurture leadership and organisation development in the non-profit sector. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Mr Fong led Tote Board to respond decisively with the launch of the Enhanced Fund-Raising (EFR) programme to strengthen funding support for charities to tide through the difficult period.
3. Mr Tan Choon Shian joined the Workforce Singapore (WSG) in October 2016 after serving as Principal and Chief Executive Officer of Singapore Polytechnic (SP). Prior to his appointment at SP, Mr Tan was Deputy Managing Director of the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB). He has a career spanning nearly 20 years with the EDB, holding various Director-level positions and subsequently key appointments including Deputy Managing Director (Global Operations) from 2009 to 2012, and Assistant Managing Director (Asia Pacific) from 2007 to 2008.
4. In his tenure as the CE of WSG, Mr Tan played a pivotal role in formulating long-term strategies, catalysing innovation to help jobseekers and enterprises, and instituting necessary organisational changes to overcome immediate and long-term workforce challenges. Under his leadership, WSG became a key stakeholder in the employment facilitation ecosystem.
5. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Mr Tan led WSG to effectively implement several key elements of the Government’s response to support jobseekers and manage unemployment. This included the launch of SG United Traineeships and SG United Pathways-Company Attachment programmes. Through various efforts, the number of jobseekers placed per year tripled from 21,000 in 2016 to more than 68,000 in 2021.
6. A brief write-up on the new CE and outgoing CE is attached at Annex A.
7. The Ministry of Finance and Tote Board would like to express our deepest appreciation to Mr Fong for his dedication and invaluable contributions to Tote Board, and also extend our warmest welcome to Mr Tan to Tote Board.