S Alice Mong

Executive Director, Asia Society Hong Kong Center

 

The executive director of Asia Society Center Hong Kong for the past ten years, S Alice Mong’s focus is on running the centre as an arts, cultural and educational space

S Alice Mong
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S Alice Mong has been interested in museums for as long as she can remember. When she was about five, her parents took her brother and her all the way from Taiwan, where the Mongs lived, to the Palace Museum of Taipei. “My love for museums started at that age. It was a place to go on a weekend with my parents and my sibling, and it was fun,” she says.

She left Taiwan for the US aged ten, and would go on to study international relations at Ohio State University. “I wanted to become a diplomat. Since leaving Taiwan at a young age, I grew up in the US as a Chinese American and that connection with people was always something I was drawn to,” she says. After graduation, she worked in trade promotion and, in 1992, was sent by the governor of Ohio to Hong Kong to oversee trade development between the state, Hong Kong and Southeast Asia. From then on, she worked in government, non-profit and for-profit organisations both here and in New York.

But throughout, she remained interested in arts and culture. In October 2011, Asia Society was about to open a new venue in Admiralty; Mong visited the space and fell in love. The organisation was looking for an executive director, and Mong, with her previous experience opening the Museum of Chinese in America as its director, was a great fit.

She has now been at the head of Asia Society Hong Kong Center for ten years. The way she envisions and runs it goes back to her childhood museum experience. “I believe in starting kids young to concerts, museums or playing an instrument without forcing them to it,” she says. “I’m now at this wonderful space, where multi-generational families come in to visit the gallery and attend our programmes and workshops. That would be the genesis of my love of spaces like ours in the art and cultural sector.”

(Photo: Affa Chan)

"I believe in starting kids young to concerts, museums or playing an instrument without forcing them to it. I’m now at this wonderful space of Asia Society Hong Kong Center, where multi-generational families come in to visit the gallery and attend our programmes and workshops. That would be the genesis of my love of spaces like ours in the art and cultural sector."

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Did You Know?


The Asia Society Hong Kong Center has been around since 1990, but it wasn’t until February 2012 that it has a permanent space in Admiralty. It was one of the first few major arts and cultural space in Hong Kong back then, and seeing how many people she and her team has trained in the centre to progress in their career in cultural space like M+, Tai Kwun and West Kowloon has been one of Alice Mong’s greatest joys as the executive director of the Asia Society Hong Kong Center.

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