Year: 2019 2018 2017 

Press Release 

  OUHK to confer four outstanding personages 13/11/2014

The Open University of Hong Kong (OUHK) will confer honorary doctorates upon Mrs Eva Cheng Li Kam-fun, Dr York Yat-Ngok Chow, Prof. John Leong Chi-yan and Prof. Zhong Binglin in recognition of their achievements and contributions at its 23rd Congregation on 8 December.

Dr. Simon Ho




Mrs Eva Cheng Li Kam-fun (Doctor of Business Administration, honoris causa)

Mrs Eva Cheng Li Kam-fun graduated from the University of Hong Kong with a Bachelor of Arts Degree (Honours) and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration. Mrs Cheng began her business management career as an Administrative Secretary in Amway Hong Kong in 1977. After 34 years of service, she retired in 2011 from the concurrent positions of Executive Vice President of Amway Corporation, Regional CEO of Amway Greater China & Southeast Asia and Executive Chairman of Amway China Co. Ltd.

Under Mrs Cheng’s visionary leadership, Amway Corporation has successfully expanded its business across mainland China. Throughout the process, Mrs Cheng led the market launch and overcame significant regulatory challenges and operational difficulties repeatedly. Among all the prestigious awards received, Amway China ranked among ‘The 100 Largest Foreign Invested Enterprises’ for seven consecutive years.

Mrs Cheng’s business prowess and frontier spirit are widely recognized in the business sector and earned her numerous awards. They include: Forbes Magazine’s World’s 100 Most Powerful Women for two consecutive years, Fortune Magazine’s (Chinese Edition) 25 Most Influential Business Women in China, CNBC’s China Business Leaders Awards - China Talent Management Award, and Phoenix Television’s Top 10 Business Talents in China, and and Southern Metropolis Daily’s Top 10 Marketing Talents in China.

Mrs Cheng remains active in the business community and currently serves on the Boards of multiple publicly listed companies as Independent Non-Executive Director. These companies include Nestle S.A., Trinity Limited, Haier Electronics Group Company Limited, The Link Management Limited and Amcor Limited.

Mrs Cheng has been devoted to serving a wide range of public services in mainland China and Hong Kong. Among her many roles, she is the Founding and Honorary Chairman of Amway Charity Foundation, Executive Committee Member of All-China Women’s Federation and Director of China Children and Teenagers Foundation. She is also a staunch supporter of higher education development and has served on a number of committees of universities and educational institutions in Hong Kong. Currently she is a Member of the Court of the OUHK and served the OUHK Council from 2003 to 2010. In recognition of her contribution to education and the OUHK, Mrs Cheng was conferred with the Honorary University Fellowship by the University in 2009.


Dr York Yat-Ngok Chow, GBS, SBS, MBE, JP (Doctor of Social Sciences, honoris causa)

Dr York Yat-Ngok Chow is currently the Chairperson of Equal Opportunities Commission. He graduated from the University of Hong Kong (HKU) with Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery degree in 1971 and obtained his specialist qualification from the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, UK. He was awarded scholarships to pursue advanced training in Germany, London and Edinburgh.

From 1983 to 1992, he served as Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at the Princess Margaret Hospital and Senior Consultant Orthpaedic Surgeon at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital. With the establishment of the Hospital Authority, Dr Chow began a new chapter in his medical profession by switching over to hospital and healthcare administration. From 1992 to 2004, he was the Chief Executive of Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Queen Mary Hospital and the Hong Kong West Cluster of the Hospital Authority. He was appointed as Secretary for Health, Welfare and Food in 2004; and as Secretary for Food and Health from 2007 to 2012. During his tenure, Dr Chow has made far-reaching contributions to Hong Kong’s public healthcare development, such as the introduction of new anti-tobacco law and policies, healthcare service and manpower reforms for public and private services, food safety law and regulations, and marine conservation ordinance.

Dr Chow has been enthusiastically sharing his expertise and experience in the medical profession and public healthcare domain by taking up various roles in public services in mainland China and Hong Kong. He is also passionate about sports and promoting sports. He was voted the Omega Sportsman of the Year when studying at HKU, and was elected as a Member of the Executive Committee and Vice President of the International Paralympic Committee and received the prestigious Paralympic Order in 2005. He is currently the International Ambassador for Squash.

Dr Chow was awarded a MBE in 1995, a Silver Bauhinia Star in 2001 and a Gold Bauhinia Star in 2009.


Prof. John Leong Chi-yan, SBS, OBE, JP (Doctor of Science, honoris causa)

Prof. John Leong Chi-yan is currently the Chairman of the Hospital Authority. He graduated from the University of Hong Kong (HKU) with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery degree in 1965. Since then, he worked at his alma mater for 38 years. He was Chair Professor and Head of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery from 1981 to 2003. Concomitantly, he headed the Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology at Queen Mary Hospital. He was Dean of the Faculty of Medicine from 1985 to 1990, and Director of the School of Postgraduate Medical Education and Training, Faculty of Medicine, from 1993 to 1999.

As an internationally renowned clinician-scientist specializing in spinal and pediatric orthopaedics, Prof. Leong has frequently published papers in top orthopaedic journals and delivered invited eponymous lectures in prestigious overseas universities and orthopaedic associations. He was also elected President of the Société Internationale de Chirurgie Orthopédique et de Traumatologie (SICOT).

Prof. Leong was appointed President of the OUHK from 2003 to 2014. Under his visionary leadership, OUHK has flourished remarkably in many aspects. These include the success in transforming the OUHK into a genuine multi-mode university by the offering of full-time programmes, and later expanding to provide other teaching mode programmes, on the basis of distance learning programmes. During his tenure, he completed two major campus extension projects which made tremendous contributions to the University’s long-term development. Prof. Leong has been conferred Emeritus President upon retirement this April.

With outstanding achievements and contributions in various fields, Prof. Leong has received numerous accolades. He was elected as an Academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and was conferred Doctor of Science, honoris causa by HKU. In addition, he received the Walter P. Blount Service Award from the Scoliosis Research Society (USA) and the ‘Leader of the Year (Education / Research category)’ from Sing Tao News Corporation Limited.

Prof. Leong was appointed Justice of the Peace in 1993, and was awarded an OBE in 1996 and a Silver Bauhinia Star in 2009.


Prof. Zhong Binglin (Doctor of Letters, honoris causa)

Prof. Zhong Binglin is the President of Chinese Society of Education and Honorary Vice President of Cardiff University, UK. He was appointed the Director General of the Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Education. He served as the President of Beijing Normal University from 2001 to 2012 and is currently teaching at the university.

Prof. Zhong graduated from Southeast University (formerly known as Nanjing Institute of Technology) in 1977 and obtained his Master’s degree in Engineering in 1987. He received his PhD degree from the University of Wales, UK in 1994. In the same year, he returned to China and assumed the position as Vice President of Southeast University.

Prof. Zhong is a veteran educator and prolific researcher in the field of science and technology. Since 1980s, he has been teaching and conducting research on areas such as machine fault diagnosis, dynamic system modeling and forecast, and quality engineering. He led or participated in projects of various organizations such as National Science Foundation and 863 National Hi-tech Development Research Fund.

Since 1990s, Prof. Zhong’s academic profession has been extended to higher education management and educational policy research. He took charge of several major philosophy and social science research projects of Ministry of Education and National Science Foundation. He also led a dozen projects commissioned by Ministry of Education, Ministry of Finance and Beijing Municipality. As a renowned and devoted educator, Prof. Zhong has been actively promoting the educational development in the country and serving on a number of committees.

In recognition of his contributions to higher education development and outstanding achievements in scientific research, Prof. Zhong received four ministerial and provincial prizes for science and technology advancement and two national awards for his achievements in teaching.  

The 23rd Congregation of the OUHK will be held on 8 December (Monday) at the Arena of Asia World Expo in Lantau Island.

  Media Enquiries: Public Affairs Unit
Tel : 2768 6355 E-mail: