Ms. Haiyan Qian, devoted wife, loving mother, and dedicated International Civil Servant for the United Nations, died on the morning of 18 February 2013 at the age of 57 after a heroic battle with cancer.
During the past 33 years, Ms. Qian dedicated her career to global public policy, governance, public administration and development. Since joining the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA), Ms. Qian has served as Chief Manager of the United Nations Public Administration Network (UNPAN), Chief of the e-Government Branch (formerly known as Knowledge Management Branch) before becoming the Director of the Division for Public Administration and Development Management (DPADM) on 1 February 2009. Prior to joining UNDESA, Ms. Qian worked for other United Nations agencies, such as the Centre for Science and Technology for Development and UNEP’s Centre on Environmentally Sound Technology in Japan. Before joining the United Nations, Ms. Qian worked for the Chinese Government in the area of science and technology for development and served in the Chinese Permanent Mission to the United Nations based in New York, covering the United Nations Second Committee on Economic and Social Affairs.
At the United Nations, Ms. Qian has left behind a legacy founded on hard work, dedicated service and loyalty. Ms. Qian was a visionary leader that was admired and respected by all her colleagues and others in the field of public administration around the world.
Ms. Qian received her Bachelor of Arts in Beijing, China and her Master in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, USA.
[click here to read this text in Chinese]
[click here to read the thank you letter from Ms. Haiyan Qian’s family]
It has been three years since Haiyan left us. Memories remain, still missed, loved as always.
She was my supervisor during my internship at the UN in 2008, and the person who inspired me to come back to the organization after completing my studies. I keep a wonderful memory of her and hope to honour her legacy at the UN.
To remember Haiyan, as I often do, is to remember someone who could inspire and unite others, who celebrated life and who loved her family immeasurably. She continues to be a role model for me in so many ways.
As today marks one year since Haiyan has passed on, it is a good time for me to remember the selfless and upright person that Haiyan was. She gave generously of herself and her time to the work of the United Nations, the Department of Economic and Social Affairs and to the Division for Public Administration and Development Management. I miss her commitment to serve the vulnerable populations and to bring about development and good governance through ICTs. I miss her dedication to raising the professionalism and service to the public of the Division. I miss her care for her colleagues and efforts to promote the professional development of each individual who worked with her. However, I am comforted by the collective memory we have of Haiyan and am spurred to contribute to the work that she had carried on. I am glad to have known her.
Today, 18 February 2014, marks the first year anniversary of Haiyan’s passing. I reflect on what I have lost and what I have gained since I had the privilege of knowing Haiyan and working for and with her in pursuit of UN goals. I believe Haiyan’s family and closed ones can certainly find comfort in the knowledge that her kindness, compassion and wisdom will live on through those she has left behind. And I know that I am not alone in remembering a truly wonderful person that meant so much to so many.
Wai Min Kwok 郭伟民
February 18, 2014
I have learnt today with sadness the passing on of Ms. Hayian Qian. Our heartfelt condolences go to the familay and friends at UNDESA. Hayian was an inspiration in the fields of public administration and development. May her soul rest in peace
Municipal Development Partnership for Eastern and Southern Africa
June 18, 2013
I learn only today, consulting by chance your site, the departure of Ms Quan, but wish to add my tribute to a person of whom I have the best memory for her unfailing kindness in the collaboration she extended to the ILO during the CEPA sessions, and of her gracious and smiling behaviour throughout. She certainly exemplified the UN Secretariat at its best!