Like most children, young Susan Peh had ideas about what she wanted to be when she grew up. “All my childhood and young adulthood, I wanted to be a musician,” she shares. Unfortunately, like most childhood aspirations, hers didn’t come true – even though she got a place at the Royal College of Music in London to study piano performance at the age of 17.
But Peh isn’t looking back. Today, as CEO of Adsan Law – rebranded from Yeo-Leong & Peh, the practice she started with her husband 33 years ago – she has found her stage in the courtroom. “Stepping out of my teenage dreams and taking the plunge to go into legal studies was one of the biggest risks I have taken, but I never regretted choosing law,” she says. As an appreciator of literature and an avid reader, it has always felt like a natural alternative career to her. “It is a meaningful profession because you are protecting the rights of your clients, family, and friends.”
Not only do her loved ones provide meaning to her work, they are also her inspiration. She cites becoming a mother as one of the most significant milestones in her life, saying: “Nothing is more humbling than motherhood. You are constantly putting other lives before your own. This is pertinent to the core of legal practice, which is essentially a part of the service industry. We are constantly solving the problems of others, very often at the expense of our own time and space.”
To Peh, kindness is never a sign of weakness. “One common misconception is that lawyers have to be aggressive. That is certainly not the case. You can still offer sound, well-researched legal advice while maintaining a kind temperament.”