Susana Wong Soi Man has been in charge of Macau’s Maritime and Water Affairs Bureau since 1999. She speaks fluent Cantonese, Mandarin, English, and Portuguese.
Wong’s family first established roots in Macau when her grandparents, natives of Doumen, Zhuhai, emigrated to the SAR. Her father later returned to Guangzhou to study, work, and start a family, where Wong was born in 1967. He passed away when Wong was seven, and the family moved back to Macau where her mother worked long hours to support them. Although Wong had to look after her brother and cook for the family, she was outstanding both in the classroom and on the sports field, where she excelled at the 100-metre dash, representing her school and Macau in numerous athletic meets.
Wong graduated with a degree in electronics from Zhongshan University in the spring of 1989. That fall, she spent an academic year in Portugal studying the language.
In 1990, Wong joined the Municipal Council (Leal Senado) and shortly thereafter was transferred to the Maritime Administration. In 1995, she was the only master’s degree candidate in Maritime Safety Administration at the World Maritime University in Malmo, Sweden.
On 20 May 1999, Wong was appointed director of the Maritime Administration, now the Marine and Water Bureau of Macau, at the age of 32.
She is the first native Chinese and the first woman to head this bureau. In 2006, she was charged with overseeing Macau’s water supply which significantly expanded her responsibilities.
With a consultative management style, rather than autocratic, Wong counsels her bureau to “take one step at a time”. “My goal is to do a good job and stay healthy.”