Ivan Lee (M69)

Update : April 2. 2022

  • While attending RIT, he had a private business selling Kyauk Me Laphet Chauk
  • Earned more than enough to pay for hostel fees and car expenses
  • Moved to US
  • Studied MS
  • PE for New York and New Jersey
  • Entrepreneur
  • Golden Sponsor for SPZP-2000
  • Sponsored Naw Mu Mu Aye to attend SPZP-2007
  • Major donor for the 69er Health Care Fund
  • Donated PCs to YTU (via U Nyi Hla Nge)
  • Father passed away when he was quite young
  • Mother lived to 102
    She was mentally active playing Mah Jong for two hours daily
  • Spouse : Ivy (GBNF)
    In her memory, Ivan donated to build a school in Kyauk Me
  • Two daughters
  • Six grand children
  • Life Platinum for Bridge
    Competitive Card Game
  • Play Accordion and Harmonica
  • For several years, he hosted the annual RIT-UCC Gathering
    The timing was chosen to coincide with visits by Saya Dr. Aung Gyi and Saya U Soe Paing
  • Invited us in 2015
    Organized a whirlwind trip to Canada to pay homage to
    Saya U Aung Khin in Windsor
    Saya Dr. Aung Gyi in Napean, Ottawa.
    Provided car and gas
    Drove part of the trip
    The major portion of the trip was handled by Fred Thetgyi (M69)
    Visited Massachusetts (Host : Dr. Tun Aung Gyaw, EC69)
    and Connecticut (Host : U Toung / Tom, EC69)
    on the way back
  • In June 2018, he organized another trip to Canada for selected sayas (e.g. Dr. Tin Win, U Aung Myint) and alumni
  • Founded MASTAA and served as CEO
Ivan Lee and family
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is windsor-3.jpg
Ivan and Saya U Aung Khin

Golden Sponsor

On the morning of October 5, 2000, Ivan called me and asked how he can support the “RIT Alumni International” Activities. He earlier donated $360 to cover the hard costs of running the http:/www.ex-rit.org web site for a year.

He had written a check of $1200. He would donate $1000 to the SPZP and $200 to the Alumni General Fund. When I thanked him, he said,

“I’m not donating to your pocket. I’m donating for a good cause. The time you’ve put in definitely much more than $1200. I want you guys to set up a formal organization and a permanent fund”.

He became a Golden Sponsor for SPZP-2000. There were five Golden Sponsors:

  • David Ko (U Tin Myint, M67)
  • Ivan Lee (U Khin Maung Oo, M69)
  • Steeve Kay (U Thaung Sein, EC70)
  • Benny Tan (Tan Yu Beng, M70)
  • U Maung Maung Than (M79)

E-mail about study and work

Ivan wrote to Daniel Tint Lwin (M69), Saya U Aung Myint (M69) and KMZ (EC76, Web master) ;

I have been staying at East Brunswick, New Jersey, USA for a long time [more than 25 years in 2000]. EB is a small nice town between New York City (40 miles south) and Philadelphia (60 miles).

I got my MIME in 1976 from Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn, NYC [New York City[. I am holding both NYS [New York State] and NJS [New Jersey State] PE [Professional Engineering] licenses. Back in 1974, I was working as a nuclear engineer in a Nuclear Power Plant. By 1982, I was working as an senior mechanical engineer at the major chemical/petrochemical plants. I performed planning, scheduling, design, specification, procurement, construction management, client interfacing, trouble shooting, etc. — you name it. In 1988. I purchased the engineering and construction firm where I was chief engineer and operation manager. In 1992 I purchased a garden apartment with 46 units and established a realty company. In 1996 I purchased a co-generation power plant which produces power and steam/hot water to the hospitals, but this one was not doing great, so I gave up within two years. I slowed down my engineering and construction business in 1998. The only business I am working as a part time is the real estate business. I also own two office building and two single family houses. I also have a beach house at the NJ shore spending most summer there.

I have two adult daughters. The elder one graduated from Cornell University with Mechanical Engineering Degree and is working as a financial institution at Wall Street in NYC. The younger one graduated from an artist college and is doing photo for Amazon website advertisement in New York City. My wife is from Burma as well. We never returned there, since we immigrated.

I spend my time purchasing/selling stocks daily, managing the real estate business and playing Bridge [a card game] that is my hobby. I am a Bronze Life Master in ACBL (American Contract Bridge League).

That is. This is my life. One more thing I would like to add is when my wife and I came here to USA, all we had was $60 plus $1200 air tickets loan from Pan Am.

Most of our class mates and friends are smart, intelligent, and willing to work. But a few has business mind to motivate or establish their wealth. I will talk to you more if you are interested.

Talking about donation, last year, I proposed to the Myanmar/Burmese Ambassador in Washington, DC, to donate my engineering documents, books, technical catalogs, etc to Myanmar/Burma. The offer was not accepted.

Does RIT has email address? I’d like to email to the staff of RIT. I like to say “Hello” to Naw Mu Mu Aye (T69). I heard she is the Head of Textile Department at RIT.

Ivan’s philosophy

In another e-mail, Ivan wrote :

I have helped at least 75 relatives people immigrate to USA. I have sponsored at least 200 relatives, classmate, friends to USA without spending a penny to the lawyer. I had provided air tickets fees, lodging facilities, food, and transportation. I also helped most of them look for suitable jobs for most of them. I also arranged their children to go to school. This is not an easy assignment, need a huge heart to do that. My wife is of tremendous help in doing these projects. It took us more than 10 years on a consistent basis to do the projects.

I donated about $1,000,000 to my childhood school via Ko Aung Myint back in 1991/92. The school has 1000 students. They have named their assembly hall after me.

The message I like to offer is when you are available, you should be able to contribute your assets (including knowledge, money, personal involvement etc.) back to the society.

Categories: 69ers

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s