Right at home in a house chair

| Siu Sai-wo 13 Sep 2018

Lawyer Walter Chan Kar-lok has been elected chairman of the Hong Kong Housing Society's supervisory board, replacing Marco Wu Moon-hoi who has completed his term.

Chan doesn't adopt a high profile but is very experienced in public service.

He has served in many housing-related positions, including being a member of the Housing Authority and the Urban Renewal Authority.

He is also well versed in Housing Society operation, having been on its board for many years.

The society has in recent years been pushing hard in developing housing for the elderly, a notable project being The Tanner Hill that targets the well-to-do class.

The rental-only luxury residence on North Point's mid-levels has a rather nice location, and tenants pay several million dollars for a lifelong lease.

The market wasn't familiar with this kind of leasing arrangement, but the project is proving a success after fine tuning.

Chan contributed ideas to the project and has helped to market it too by introducing it to his good friends.

Talking after the society election, he said homes for the elderly will be one focus of the organization's future efforts.

Housing is of top importance in local public policies, of course, and the society's role is not limited to homes for senior citizens.

Chan has also served as the Journalism Education Foundation's legal adviser for many years, and while offering advice free he has also gained knowledge about the media.

I saw him fielding reporter's questions on television after getting elected, and he handled himself well.

Housing bodies, be they public or private, deal with sensitive issues, so their helmsmen must be prepared to face the media or even defuse public relation bombs any time.

A knowledge of media operations is certainly helpful in tackling such situations.

is publisher of Sing Tao Daily

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