‘Sharmini cared deeply for the underprivileged’

By David De Alwis
David De Alwis with Sharmini Subramaniam at the 7th Indian Executive Club Awards 2017

A tribute by David De Alwis, Senior Associate, Aitken Partners

Sharmini Subramaniam’s passing will leave a void in my heart, that I’ll probably never be able to fill. She was not only a treasured colleague but one of my closest friends.

I will always remember her infectious laugh, her smile and even her eye roll when I said something funny—but she knew she shouldn’t laugh. She was caring to a fault—always putting the needs of other (clients, colleagues and friends) above her own and always giving the best of herself to all those around her.

She cared deeply for the underprivileged, the unrepresented and those society left behind. In the law she was one of the sharpest legal minds and worked incredibly hard for her clients but she also played fair—because she didn’t need to play any other way—her knowledge of the law and her gut instinct on how it would be applied was second to none.

As a colleague and the head of her team she cared deeply for her staff at a personal and professional level. She always had time to mentor and train and answered even the most mundane questions with a warm and genuine smile. She wanted everyone to feel their best and was enthusiastic about making a big deal out of the small life achievements of those around her. I will remember her turning up to work with donuts, pandan cakes and curry puffs to celebrate my, and other colleagues’ achievements.

She broke every ceiling, but did it with humility, grace and her trademark smile. Even in the face of illness, she was defiant, determined and ready to overcome it—sadly that was not to be.

To me, Sharmini was the best among us and always will be. Whilst I mourn her loss, I know she will always be looking down on me, laughing and rolling her eyes.

Gone too soon.


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