Meet Samantha: The Positive-Driven Operations Team Lead at UNDP Bangkok Regional Hub

Faces of UNDP Thailand - Catalysts of Change: Advancing Gender Equality Through Empowerment

June 11, 2024

1. Tell us about yourself: What’s your educational background/professional experience?  

I am an Accountant by profession (CPA Australia) and currently completing an MBA from Deakin University Australia. My professional journey has been rich and diverse, spanning various sectors and geographies. I've served as an Operations Manager for UNDP in Libya, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Sri Lanka, where I honed my skills in managing complex operations in diverse environments. Before joining UNDP, I made significant contributions to the private sector, my career highlights are, at Emirates Airline as a Finance Manager in Dubai, Software solution provider in Australia as their Financial Controller at and plastic manufacturing co in Sri Lanka, power, and utility provider in Australia. 

2. What made you apply to work with UNDP Thailand?

With my family in Australia and my mother in Sri Lanka, Thailand's location in the same region serves as a central hub, enabling me to effectively manage my time between personal and professional commitments. I also enjoy working for the regional bureau of RBAP under the leadership of Kanni and Christophe. Their guidance and support have been invaluable in my professional journey

3. What are your activities or main responsibilities? What is a day at the office like?

My role involves managing the day-to-day operations of both the HUB and THA CO, where I encounter a dynamic array of activities on a daily basis.


Photo Courtesy: UNDP Thailand


4. What are some of the challenges you encountered while working at UNDP Thailand? How did you overcome it?   

One challenge I've noticed is staff turnover, but having well-established SOPs proves invaluable in facilitating the onboarding process for new staff members.

5. Tell us about your favourite moment with UNDP Thailand. 

My most memorable experience thus far has been the staff retreat, during which I had the opportunity to connect with many of my colleagues. This was particularly significant for me as someone who is relatively new to the team.

6. How does this position benefit your career path/choices within the UN or beyond?  

This position enables me to gain insights into fieldwork, which I thoroughly enjoy. My involvement with the Resident Representative (RR) and the Deputy Resident Representative (DRR) activities has been particularly rewarding, especially since my initial interest in programmatic work.


7. What SDGs are you helping to implement through your position?   

In my capacity within operations, we contribute to the implementation of all Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by actively supporting and facilitating project execution.

8. As UNDP staff, how do you support gender equality through your role or the work you are currently working on?

In everything I undertake, I prioritize inclusivity, ensuring that every action I take reflects the principle of Leave No One Behind (LNOB) across all processes.

9. What piece of advice would you give to those who are considering applying to #JoinALifeChangingMission with UNDP.  

If you want to give back to this beautiful universe, please join UNDP – it’s a passion and not just a mere job. You can make change happe.

10. Give us 3 words that describe UNDP Thailand 

Passion, Fun, Amazing



The Faces of UNDP Thailand is a series to echo the voice of UNDP staff who support UNDP and the community to advance the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).