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The Hon Sir CHAU Sik Nin

Doctor of Laws
honoris causa

Sir Sik-nin Chau, a doctor well-versed in the art of healing the eye, the ear, and the throat, is today a man seldom out of the public eye whose voice frequently has the public's ear. He came to us as a boy of fifteen from St Stephen's College in 1918, and graduated in medicine six years later. He then went abroad for further study in Vienna and London, where he obtained Diplomas in Ophthalmic Medicine and Surgery, and in Laryngology and Otology. With these specialist qualifications he returned to Hong Kong to practise. Like other honorary graduates before us today, his career has included a period on the University's staff, for in 1932 he joined the Department of Surgery for three years as Lecturer in Opthalmology. His other close connexions with the University were to come much later after the war, when he was a member of the Interim Committee which operated the University for the first few months, in 1946 to 1947, and was subsequently appointed by the Chancellor in 1956 to succeed Sir Lo Man Kam on the University Council. He has also, during the fifties, served as Vice-President of our Alumni Association.

He is, of course, best known to the community today for his activities in politics, commerce, and social welfare. He was an Unofficial Member of the Legislative Council of the Hong Kong Government from 1946 to 1959, and is the present Senior Unofficial Member of the Executive Council, on which he has served since 1948. He was elected Deputy Chairman of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association in Hong Kong in 1953, and served in this capacity for six years. He was a member of the Urban Council for four years before the war, and has served on the Government Medical Board and the Board of Education. In business, he is chairman or director of no fewer than fourteen different concerns which between them do almost everything for the Hong Kong resident except marry and bury him. You could, for example, make use of some of these concerns to borrow the money to buy a piece of land to build a house, and go to others for your insurance, banking, clothing, rubber shoes, and travel abroad. The chow that you ate could also, so to speak, come to you by courtesy of Sir Chau Sik Nin , and if you should, after all this, suffer any ailment of the eyes, ears, or throat, one of the partners of Doctors Chau, Li, and Chau could be at your service. It is not surprising, therefore, that our honorary graduate should also be Chairman of the Federation of Hong Kong Industries as well as Chairman of the Hong Kong Management Association, and Honorary President of a number of unions or associations of manufacturers. Social welfare organisations also benefit from his guidance and business acumen, particularly those concerned with housing, such as the Hong Kong Settlers Housing Corporation, and those concerned with tuberculosis, such as the Hong Kong Anti-TB Association, the Ruttonjee Sanatorium, and the Grantham Hospital.

Citation written and delivered by Professor D Barker, MA, DPhil, the Public Orator of the University.

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