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Tribute to CT Hew, Founder, Hew & Associates and first Chairman of PRHK (formerly CPRFHK)

August 18th 2020
CT Hew

It is with great sadness that we learned of the passing of CT Hew earlier this week. CT was the first chairman of the PRHK (formerly CPRFHK) in 2003 and in this position, helped establish the foundations of the robust PR industry we enjoy in Hong Kong today. He was known for his crisis counsel and worked on some of the most challenging and complex issues of his time. He was supportive of the industry to the end, attending PRHK board meetings when he could and always offering wise perspective based on his considerable industry knowledge and wide connections. Many of today’s PRHK members worked with him or were mentored by him, and all speak fondly of the experience, praising his counsel, acumen and kindness. He was a standard bearer for PR in Hong Kong, but he did it his way – with grace and good heart. It’s these qualities that stand the test of time and will be his legacy for years to come. On behalf of PRHK, I would like to extend our heartfelt condolences to his family. We will always treasure his contribution to PRHK and the Hong Kong PR industry, – Rachel Catanach, President FleishmanHillard Greater China, PRHK Board Chairman

“I met CT at PRHK board meetings over the years. At each session he attended, he was always the light of the group, sharing his wisdom and advice to the team, providing us with guidance. It was inspiring to have met him and I hope that we can continue his legacy in HK PR and the communications industry as we navigate through this challenging year and many more years ahead.” Maria Cheong, Senior Director, BCW, PRHK Education & Mentorship Chair.

“CT was a true gentleman of our profession, leading the way for many local PR professionals to follow in his footsteps and build a successful PR career. He was a champion of the next generation as well as a much sought after strategic advisor for many Hong Kong companies that, under his guidance, have built their brands.” – Kiri Sinclair, Founder & CEO, Sinclair, PRHK Partnerships Chair.

“I was fortunate enough to meet CT Hew when I first arrived in Hong Kong. He was incredibly kind and generous with his time, helping me to understand the nuances of the Hong Kong market. He and I worked on a couple on a couple of client projects together where I was privileged to witness his calm, considered consulting style which was valued so highly by those he advised.” – Ben Evetts, independent consultant, PRHK Digital & Marketing Co-Chair.

“Sadly, I was shocked to learn that my ex-BM boss, veteran PR master and longtime supporter of the PRHK, CT Hew, passed away earlier this week. My deepest condolences to his family. CT was the gentleman in the PR profession I always looked up to. He was so intelligent, gentle and modest. His guidance and encouragement inspired me to learn to be a real PR professional. CT, you will always be in our memory.” – Felix Poon, Founder, Vis Communications, PRHK Membership Chair.

“When I first entered the industry over two decades ago in Hong Kong, CT was always the person that inspired me to push myself even though we did not know each other at the time. He was a colossal PR figure at the time and being a fellow Malaysian, he was certainly someone to look up to. We eventually became colleagues and partners at Golin when he was Managing Director of Hong Kong and I a newly appointed Managing Director in Singapore. Always the consummate professional and gentleman, he was a big brother figure who guided me through our time there. A highly respected client lead, he always had the client interest at heart. He will be missed.” – Baxter Jolly, CEO, Asia Pacific, Weber Shandwick.

“The first time I met CT was in the Golin Hong Kong office mid-2016 when I took on the MD role. The then President of Asia, Jon Hughes, wanted me to meet with him so we could get to know each other; CT had a long standing history with Golin. We chatted for quite some time and I remember being mesmerised by his stories, his experience but also his sense of fun, warmth and kindness. Since that day, we kept in touch and he offered support whenever he could. CT was inspirational, supportive, generous and talented. He was an industry legend and a gentleman. We will miss him greatly.” – Jane Morgan, Managing Director, Golin Hong Kong.

“CT was always intellectually curious about the world, and I found it hugely amusing that in his later years he wouldn’t organise meetings before lunch as he liked to read late into the night and didn’t want to sacrifice that by getting up early. He also gave me tips, without realising it, on how to raise my children. The Hew family would choose a location for their annual vacation and then set themselves the task of learning about the place they would visit. Not restaurants and shopping but studying the deep history of a country and its people. This curiosity made him one of the first truly multi-cultural people I have met and it was only fitting that he would be the first Chairman of PRHK. My respect for him and the ethical behaviour and kindness he engendered never wavered. He was a true gentleman in the truest sense of the word and my sincerest condolences go out to his family.” – Emma Smith, CEO, Sandpiper Communications.


“I am proud to say that C.T. Hew was my friend and colleague for more than 20 years.  He played several prominent management roles in Golin Hong Kong, including Managing Director.  But his strength and passion were working directly with clients to solve difficult problems. He was an astute listener and a thoughtful counselor.  When CT gave advice it was always followed.  He was also a humble man who never tried to impress people with his vast knowledge of Hong Kong and his extensive experience in communications. But his most memorable trait was kindness. Even years after he left Golin to start his own agency,  CT made sure we got together every time I visited HK —  just to catch up on family and life.  His welcoming hospitality taught me to be a better host to colleagues who visit Chicago but I will never be as gracious as CT.” – Fred Cook, Chairman, Golin.