Malaysian Timber Council appoints first woman for chief operations officer

The Malaysian Timber Council (MTC) has appointed Noraihan Abdul Rahman as its new chief operations officer (COO), taking over Roger Chin Chew Choy. Effective 1 Mar 2022, Noraihan is the first woman to be appointed as the COO since MTC began its operations in 1992.

“I am very happy that Noraihan has been appointed as COO. Being a woman, I am very proud of this,” said MTC chairwoman Hajah Norrida Yusoff, who incidentally is also MTC’s first woman chair.

Noraihan, who holds a BSc in business administration (marketing) from the University of Arizona, US, started her career in MTC in July 1995 as an officer in the Market Promotion Division (MPD). She was promoted to the post of executive in 2000 and senior executive in 2004.

In 2010, Noraihan became the deputy director of MPD where she assisted the division’s director in the planning and implementation of trade promotion programmes and activities until 2017. She has also led and organised numerous participations in international trade exhibitions, the first being the Australia Furniture Exhibition in 1997 for 20 Malaysian furniture companies.

Two notable projects that she led were MTC’s participation in the American Institute of Architect Conference on Architecture in Florida, US, in 2017 where for the first time MTC featured a Meranti timber structure measuring 36 square metres.

In the same year, she also coordinated a similar project, this time showcasing a timber pavilion made of seven different Malaysian timber species using the “Chidori” technique where timber planks were connected through a joint system without glue or nails at the International Architecture, Interior Design and Building Exhibition (Archidex) at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre. The structure won MTC its first Gold Award for Best Booth Design.

In 2018, Noraihan was transferred to the Corporate Communications Division (CCD) and was promoted as director of the division in June 2020.

“Noraihan has been instrumental in raising MTC’s profile in the media through the many programmes that the CCD has been organising. This internal promotion for one of the longest serving staff is also a manifestation of MTC’s commitment for leadership development and succession planning,” said Muhtar Suhaili, CEO of MTC.

Among her achievements were MTC’s inaugural Media Night in 2018, led the organising committee for MTC’s 30th Anniversary Celebration, familiarisation programmes for both the local and foreign media, production of several public service announcement videos on the importance of the timber industry, including a programme for National Geographic, as well as the introduction of the Malaysian Timber Industry Awards 2022 and the publication of MTC’s 30th anniversary coffee table book titled Standing Tall – A Malaysian Timber Industry Journey.