Dato’ LAr Ismail Ngah is a landscape architect and town planner by qualification with over 30 years of working experience. He was the Principal Advisor to the Government of Malaysia on the development of landscape and parks throughout the country from 1996 to 2010, in his capacity as the Director General of the National Landscape Department Malaysia. He retired from government service in 2010 to advance his career in other fields. He is currently the President, of the International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA) Asia Pacific Region(2012-2015) a professional organisation based in France. He is also the current President of the Malaysia Parks, Amenity and Receation Association (MyParks). He is also serving as Chairman of Koperasi Permodalan Usahawan Selangor Berhad since 2012.
Dato’ LAr Ismail Ngah obtained his Bachelor in Town and Country Planning in 1981 and later obtained his Masters in Landscape Design from Sheffield University in 1988. He first served the government as a Town Planner at the Federal Department of Town and Country Planning and later became the Director for Public Parks and Landscape in 1990. In 1996, Dato’ was appointed the 1st Director-General of the newly established National Landscape Department. As a Director General he was responsible to transform Malaysia into a beautiful Garden Nation in line with the country’s vision 2020. He was responsible in the formulation of national policies and guidelines for national landscape development in Malaysia such as the National landscape Policy, The National Landscape Guidelines and the Tree Conservation Strategy. He initiated the formulation of Landscape Master Plans for all capital cities in Malaysia. He is also central in the establishment of Botanical, Town and State Public Parks, including The Bukit Kiara Recreational Park in Kuala Lumpur and contributed in the preparation of Landscape Master Plans for Putrajaya, the National Administrative Center of Malaysia and for the Cyberjaya Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC). He was also the Advisor to the Landscape Master Plan for the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA). He also initiated the 1st International Malaysian Landscape and Garden Festival (LAMAN) in 2004 and subsequently organized in 2006 and 2008 in the capital city of Kuala Lumpur.
Dato’ LAr Ismail Ngah was appointed Chairman of Morphosis Design, a leading landscape architectural practice in Malaysia from 2011-2012. Under the advice of the Prime Minister Dato’ initiated the establishment of of Landskap Malaysia, a not for profit organization to inculcate the love for landscape and environment among Malaysian from 2010-2011. He later appointed as the Chief Executive Officer of Landscape Malaysia (2010- 2011) and was actively involved in social and community activities such as the community reforestation program or Hutan Kita-Our Forest programs namely in Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Johor Bahru.
Dato’ Ismail was twice the President of the Institute of Landscape Architects Malaysia (ILAM) from 1996 to 2010. He was also the Advisor to the Malaysian Landscape Industry Organization or SILARA. Dato’ is the country’s representative to International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA) since 1998. He was appointed Chairman of the Design Selection Committee representing IFLA Asia Pacific for the Jinzhou China Landscape and Garden Festival that was launched in 2013. Dato’ Ismail was also the Asia Pacific Chairman for the International Federation of Parks and Recreation Administration (IFPRA) from 2005 to 2008 and also served as the IFPRA Commissioner for Malaysia since 2002. He is also the Deputy President of OISCA (Organisation for Industrial, Spiritual and Cultural Advancement ) a Japan based non governmental organisation for Malaysia since 2012.
Dato’was actively involved with Balai Ikhtisas Malaysia (BIM) way back in 1992. He started as Assistant Honorary Secretary (1992-93), Vice President (1998-99, 2013-2014), Deputy President (2014-15) and currently serving as the President of BIM (2015-16).
Academically Dato’ had been speakers at various local and international conferences and seminars especially on subject related to Landscape, Town Planning, Environmental and Management. He was adjunct professor and external examiner for UiTM and UTM for Landscape Program for many years.
Dato’ Ismail’s personal achievement however, is the momentous planting of 101,042 trees in one minute all across Malaysia under the Millennium Tree Planting Campaign in 2000, which entered the Guinness Book of World Records, organized by the National Landscape Department.