- U Thaung Sein attended the first ever 1st BE at the Rangoon Institute of Technology in 1964.
- Graduated with EC (Electrical Communications) in 1970.
- Migrated to USA in 1971.
His name was spelled Steeve (instead of the traditional Steve) by an Immigration Officer.
He liked the variant unconventional spelling and kept it.
- MSEE from Stanford University
- MBA from Pepperdine University
- Steeve has successful careers as Outstanding engineer/designer, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist.
- First career :
- Second career :
Co-founder and CEO, QTC Management
His sister (a medical doctor who had patents for processing “disability” claims) requested him to co-found QTC.
After private investors showed interest in his company, he “retired”
- Third career :
(a) Visit places of the world’s leading religions
(b) Incubate the projects of young professionals
(c) Support education and research (e.g. as trustee of University of California at Irvine)
(d) Maintain [diverse] business portfolio
- Established CABA (Charitable Alliance of Burmese Americans) and KFF (Kay Family Foundation).
- Help those in need (e.g. Cyclone Nargis in Burma).
- Never forgot his roots, his alma mater, his mentors and his friends.
- Donated $250,000+ to RIT-related activities.
- Multiple Golden Sponsor of RIT Grand Reunion and Saya Pu Zaw Pwes (SPZPs)
- Established “Steeve and Helen Kay Health Care Fund for the RIT Sayas and Sayamas”.
The balance of the fund has been transferred to SDYF (Swel Daw Yeik Foundation)
- Sponsored a Myanmar Education Delegation to visit universities and research institutions in California
- Offered matching fund of $30000 for the RIT Alumni Reunion in Los Angeles in 2015.
- Major donor for the Acariya Pu Zaw Pwe of the Combined 1st BE Intake of 64 and 65.
Three Dreams of Steeve Kay
- A short biography — summarized as three dreams — has been published by the Combined 1st BE Intake of 64 and 65, and also in “RIT Alumni International Newsletter”.
- Details can be found in the commemorative issue celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the founding of QTC.
Celebrating the 40th Anniversary of Steeve Kay’s arrival in the USA
- In 2011, Steeve hosted a gathering to celebrate the 40th anniversary of his arrival in the US. The gathering was coordinated by Steeve’s daughter (Elanor Kay).
- Elanor also arranged a visit to Teehub (which provides incubation for aspiring innovators).
Attendees include :
- Saya Dr. Chris Lee (L. Tin Htun, EE59) and spouse
- Sam Chin (ChE62) and spouse
- Henry Khoo (EC67)
- U Hla Min (EC69) and spouse
- Benny Tan (M70) and spouse
- U Zaw Min Nawaday (EP70) and spouse
- U Htin Aung (Richard, M70)
- Dr. Zaw Htun (BDS) and spouse
Three of the attendees — Benny, Zaw Min and Richard — are Steeve’s classmates from RIT.
Henry picked up Steeve on his arrival in San Francisco, California, USA.
Saya Chris Lee, Sam Chin and Dr. Zaw Htun were active in the Burmese American organizations in Southern California.
- Steeve studied for his Masters degree at Stanford University.
He was successful as an IC (Integrated Circuit) Designer.
- He also completed an MBA from Pepperdine University.
- His younger sister (Dr. Lay Kay) requested Steeve to set up QTC.
She had received patents related to the medical and legal processes to handle disability claims.
Steeve served as CEO.
Two decades later, QTC was bought by a group of investors making the two siblings multi-millionaires.
- They did not forget their roots.
Steeve set up the Kay Family Foundation.
His sister set up the B K Kee Foundation.
Their foundations have provided support for education, medical research, areas inflicted by disasters (e.g. Cyclone Nargis) and much more.
- Steeve took time to trace his roots.
He joined expeditions to visit the holy sites of Four Religions.
- Steeve is a Trustee and/or Board Member of several US universities.
- He is a Multiple Golden Sponsor for the SPZPs.
He set up the “Steeve and Helen Kay Health Care Fund for RIT Sayas and Sayamas”.
He hosted a delegation from the Ministry of Science and Technology to visit selected universities and research institutions in California.
- There were some proposals that did not materialize.
Steeve offered to set up a Computing Laboratory and promote Leapfrogging Technology for engineering sayas and students in Myanmar.
He offered to provide air fare and expenses for Sayagyis willing to share their experience in Myanmar.
He requested some support from the Myanmar side (e.g. taking care of the security and maintenance of the Laboratory. providing accommodation for the visiting Sayagyis), but with scarcity of resources and the bureaucracy of the then authorities, the proposals were not materialized.
- When Steeve’s health started to decline, he could not take long trips or wait too long for responses to his proposals.
He requested the balance of his Health Care Fund to be transferred to Swel Daw Yeik Foundation.
- He delegated his children to run KFF and his enterprise.
He still has desires to help his beloved home land.
“The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
Singing “Shwe Mi” at the 2015 Alumni Reunion in Los Angeles, USA
From the SPZP-2000 Archives
RIT Poet Laureate Ko Hla Min:
I must admit that I was suffering from a Monday morning “hangover”, having been intoxicated with emotional overdose over the reunion weekend [in October 2000].
Judging from the post-reunion emails I read, I am not alone. What a reunion!
By all measures, it was a success and did satisfy the alumni’s tremendous pent-up desire to reconnect with each other after many decades of separation. The dedication of the members of the organizing committee is second to none.
With the assistance of his lovely wife, Benny Tan devoted practically full-time to this project for several months. I had a first-hand experience to see how meticulous he was when he was designing the RIT T-shirt. It came out a winner!
I do appreciate the sensitivity the organizing committee displayed in making this event non-religious and non-political. Otherwise, it would have been very difficult for me to attend. The only regret is that I failed to locate the whereabouts of my buddy Ko Aung Min of Taunggyi (ME 70). I heard he went to Singapore, but so far my search has ended in “no find”.
Now that the grand reunion is over, everybody is slowly recovering from the “hangover”. The big question is who would go to Singapore in 2002, and how do we go about doing it?
With best regards,
Steeve Kay (Ko Thaung Sein)
Categories: 1970 - 79