Christina Foo FCPA (Aust.)
Currently the co-Founder and Managing Director of Priority One Consultancy Services, Christina Foo has over 30 years of accounting, tax, finance and strategic business advisory and consultancy experience. The 30 years included over 20 years as a business owner and over 10 years of active involvement in contributing her services to growing and promoting the interests of her accountancy profession with regulators, educators, the business community and the public.
“When I started Priority One with a former colleague, we were moving onto a different phase of our lives, where we were considering how we can effectively contribute to our community,” Christina says. “When CPA Australia invited me to be a Divisional Council member in 2007, it was the first time I have been asked to be a part of something like this and it marked the starting point of being involved with other professional bodies, which allowed me to make meaningful contributions to the accounting profession.”
Her current directorships include being a member of the Board of Directors of Malaysian Technology Development Corporation where she also chairs the Board Audit & Risk Management Committee. She also serves as the Chair of the Sunway University Business School’s Industry Advisory Board and The Mines Resort and Golf Club’s Liaison Committee.
But it doesn’t stop there; her interests went above and beyond accounting, and encompassed something closer to home and her heritage – traditional martial arts.
“It occurred to me that the culture and understanding of traditional martial arts are not properly preserved and made aware of when a friend asked me about Hakka boxing. Being Hakka, I barely knew what the art was all about at that time, and the history behind it,” she explained.
That inspired her to form MY Martial Arts Sdn Bhd – an organisation that works to preserve the traditional art form which is fast disappearing from the world through working with martial arts masters in creating global awareness, promoting martial arts through its numerous projects in research and documentation, books and audio-visual products as well as organising local and international martial arts events.
Christina added that since martial arts masters are usually selective with who they share their knowledge with, it was a big breakthrough to be able to record them performing all the steps. “We organised a three day event showcasing a variety of art forms reflecting the multi-cultural and multi-ethnic communities of Sarawak and Malaysia, including Malay Silat and Indian unarmed and weapons art. The event brought together masters from different practices and they were able to touch hands and share their knowledge with the public.”
Another passion that sparks fire in Christina is financial literacy. “As an accountant, I see the importance of financial literacy, especially amongst women and children. When you start embedding financial literacy among them, you can imagine what they can achieve with that knowledge as they apply it to their everyday lives,” she said.
She also added that accounting skills have given many women the opportunity to have a flexible and portable career in business and finance in whichever industry they choose.