50 Expatriates You Should Know [Part III]1 Jan 2012
Following our inaugural list in 2010, we bring you another 50 expatriates that you should know. Ambassadors from 18 nations that make us proud to be a part of the expatriate community. Whether they are musicians, businessmen or women, sports personalities or artists, they are the people you need to be aware of and the ones to get to know better.
21. Holland & Thompson (New Zealand / United Kingdom)
With a wealth of F&B experience, Richard and Dan came to KL in early 2001 with the aim of transforming the local F&B scene.
The Kiwi and Brit met while previously working with Telawi Street Bistro and La Bodega before branching out to start their own F&B consultancy business drbar and opening twenty.one kitchen + bar in Changkat.
A string of awards, nominations and a second twenty.one later, Richard and Dan’s goal is to eventually have 50 twenty.ones throughout Southeast Asia.
22. Gilbard Honey-Jones (UK)
As head of British International School Kuala Lumpur 37-year education veteran from Swansea, Gilbard Honey-Jones is a busy man.
Having been in the scene since 1975 and worked for the British Schools Group since 2001 as founding Headmaster in Beijing and later Group Academic Director, Gilbard has been helming the school’s operations in Malaysia for nearly three years now.
His pride has been watching BSKL grow from strength to strength over all this time.
23. Irene Hoofs (Netherlands)
Irene Hoofs had an idea that had been building unconsciously in her mind since working as a freelance designer almost a decade ago. Since then Irene has been looking for ways to combine her passion for design with her desire to start her own business.
Inspired by some well-known American blogs, she launched Bloesem in 2006, a blog resource for design, interiors, handmade items, vintage appreciation and imagination. ‘Look. Pause. Dream. Bloesem’; that is the tagline for Bloesem and she aspires to give her readers design inspiration for their homes.
Irene has found out that the beauty of blogs puts her in a constant dialogue with the world.
24. Molly Jagpal (UK)
Molly Jagpal flies the British flag in Malaysia and the Malaysian flag in the UK as the Executive Director of the British Malaysian Chamber of Commerce (BMCC). She was brought in to inject life in to the BMCC, something she has done with great success.
She sees herself as a channel of communication between Malaysia and the UK and the creative strategist of the BMCC, wearing her BMCC hat and representing the membership in government dialogues. She works closely with the British High Commissioner who is the BMCC joint patron alongside Tun Musa Hitam.
During Molly’s time at the BMCC there have been a number of inaugural events including the first ever International Women’s Day celebrations earlier this year. Molly’s goal is to strive to connect companies through networking events. Molly works tirelessly to help their members broaden their business opportunities and consider the “bigger picture”.
Molly is also the Cultural Ambassador of The Sutra Foundation working to support and promote their work under the direction and passion of Ramli Ibrahim the international dance phenomenon.
The Sutra Foundation was established in 2007 to develop awareness of traditional and contemporary performing and visual arts, uploading the philosophy of nurturing a society that appreciates art while embracing the nation’s cultural diversity.
Molly is looking forward to developing a stronger BMCC brand and capability and this year with the 2012 Olympics being in the UK will be looking to incorporate some of that fun into their own programme of activities towards seamless business between Malaysia and Britain.
25. Jingles (United Kingdom)
Jingles, session bass player and music director has co-written with Nicole Russo from Brand New Heavies, toured the world singing backing vocals with many well known artists. Jingles has now settled in Malaysia, where five years ago when he first set foot in the country, after only two days, knew this was the place he wanted to stay.
Jingles has his own management company with partner Ushera where he focuses on developing the creative talent of Malaysians, with singers, songwriters, presenters and models amongst the talent that they manage.
It is busy times for Jingles with lots of projects in the pipelines, all of which he hopes will put Malaysia on the map for musical talent.
26. Werner Kuhn (Germany)
Originally a chef from Germany and now based in Malaysia where he has been for 25 years, Werner Kuhn has a very definite handle on the restaurant and bar business. Starting out at a hotel In Penang, where he had worked for four years, Werner decided he needed something more.
He knew he wanted to stay in Malaysia, which he loved for its mixture of cultures and races, its welcoming people, the climate and its proximity to many other Asian countries. Werner set up his own catering company which was a huge success and he at one point was catering for 20,000 people, for 5 meals a day in, what was then, jungle. Working in catering and consultation for a number of years Werner finally took the decision to retire.
Five years on the golf course and improving a handicap of 24 to18, Werner decided that he was not going to make it as a professional golfer and he would never make any money out of it. He missed entertaining and cooking and although he cooked weekly for his friends, their ability to drink and big appetites meant that he was losing a lot of money!
He decided to fill his evenings with something he loved, and in 2005 he opened El Cerdo. Later, when a corner shop lot came free on Changkat near to El Cerdo, Werner took the opportunity, and then the time to think of the concept for Werner’s the night club on the first floor and restaurant on the ground floor.
The empire continued to grow as The Whisky Bar was born from an idea that Werner wanted to open up another location but didn’t want to focus on food. After all, if a restaurant failed he would be left to finish the food over a few days, if The Whisky Bar failed, he would merely need to finish the whisky. Werner is now looking towards his son Alex who joined him two months ago and his nephew Andreas to one day take the reins.
27. Femke Ligthart (Netherlands)
Femke developed her interest in art by taking many courses and workshops in drawing, painting, pottery and wood carving before settling for sculpting which she learnt from scratch from a private tutor.
She finds inspiration in women from different cultures here in Malaysia especially the Indian tradition of henna tattoos that she incorporates in her sculptures. She has hosted many exhibitions in her studio FEMKE LIGTHART Art Studio/Gallery in Tanjung Bungah, Penang and some of her work can also be seen at the WAF Gallery in Straits Quay.
28. Matthew Mack (United Kingdom)
Previously Creative Technical Director for Toni & Guy Europe, a professional of international fame who has been teaching and working for more than 10 years around the world, Mack is the guru of high level, knowledge based hair services in KL, and his Belfry Salon at Pavilion (soon to relocate to Troika) is the non plus ultra for expatriates.
29. Annabel MacKenzie (New Zealand)
Annabel is co-owner of ZariCollection, a business importing Indian textiles. She devotes her time between managing her business and helping women afflicted with breast cancer regain their image and self-confidence through Amanita, an organisation that provides aid to women living with breast cancer.
Her work with low income women in government hospitals across the country has brought her to remarkable and remote regions of Malaysia.
30. Leagha McMahon (United Kingdom)
Owner of The London Orchid a unique British-style beauty therapy spa in Damansara Heights, Leagha has previously worked with some of the top 5-star spas and hotels in the UK.
Taking the salon over, she turned it into a high-end beauty salon offering treatments such as the Sienna X Spray Tan. An outdoors person, Leagha also plays for Champers FC a women’s football team based in Kuala Lumpur.